The Accidental Roots series was, in fact, started by accident. When I first put pen to paper (or fingers to key board) I did not intend to start a series, or at least to write only three books and then move on. Accidental Roots now has five entries and there will certainly be at least two more. So, there I was, with more than book and now I needed a series name. Accidental Roots popped into my head and stuck there.
While my characters aren't necessarily rootless many of them do lack family. The one thing they have in common, whether they think so or not, is a desire to belong to someone or a group of someones. To have a family they can count on. I think this is a theme many of us can relate to. My family is pretty great but it is tiny and since I was young my parents always invited those with nowhere to go to come and be a part of ours. Our little family of three often had twelve to twenty Thanksgiving guests. We aren't necessarily born into the family we love best (or who loves us best) - but if we are lucky enough to have a great family then I believe we need to share. There, see? Accidental Roots.
Why Skagit? Firstly I needed to set my stories in a place I know well. Well enough to make up stuff about that even natives wouldn't squint at. That meant Western Washington, I have lived lots of other places but this is where I grew up. I also wanted it to be a place where all kinds of people could live. This ruled out Seattle -- too expensive these days. Gone are the times when someone could move to the Emerald City, rent a cheap place with a couple friends, and see what life brought them.
Western Washington does have a long history of enticing artistic personalities and other folks that tend to fly beneath the radar (no I am not talking about serial killers although we have more than our fair share). If you are at all interested in what is called the Northwest Mystic movement, do a search on Bill Slater, Guy Anderson, Paul Hansen, Morris Graves, Charlie Kraft (and others) along with an art community called Fishtown. When I wrote about Adam Klay's father I vaguely used Fishtown as a reference as the community he was a part of. The quirky people who live in Skagit are quite real to me and, I hope, to you.
It has been nearly a year since Storm Season was published and the characters were let out into the real world, thank you for letting them be a part of your world!