In my second work, EMPIRE, a massive Colorado wildfire clouds the hills and colors the sunsets, but also instills fear into my main character. This detail may seem like it has great timing, however, given my firefighter husband and his working knowledge of the pine beetle infestation, the fires that are going on now (just miles from our home) are expected.
For those of you that are familiar with forest or structure fires, what is memorable about them? What do you wish that you knew (or didn’t know) before you had that experience? What is burned (pardon the pun) into your brain after seeing such a destructive force?
I remember that 10 years ago, the Hayman fire decimated large swaths of land and homes just west of Colorado Springs. The wind would carry the scent of smoke and drop yellowed ash on my windshield. There have been two fires at my mother’s house (while I was living there); they were quite small, smouldering fires that cost a lot of money to fix but there wasn’t any degree of trauma that occurred.
So if there are any details that you find interesting that I should add to my manuscript before my editor gets his hands on it, please let me know!
image credit: everythingsright.com