Forest Pines, Montana
I have a confession to make. I have never been to Montana. There, I said it, and it is out of the bag. So, you may ask, why I have written a series of books set in a fictional small town in a state I have never visited?
Forest Pines, though a figment of my imagination is actually based on a small town that I would dearly love to visit. A town that for me epitomizes the real America. The America I have never seen. Let me introduce you to Columbia Falls. It is surrounded by two million acres of National Forest, which inspired the name Forest Pines, there is a river which runs through the center of town, the Flathead River which is 158 miles long and flows through both Canada and the United States. According to Columbia Fall’s website, the town's population is around 4,500, but it is home to two public golf courses and a water slide amusement park. It is only 17 miles from Glacier National Park and has eight, yes that is eight, public parks.
Glacier National Park
When I read about Columbia Falls I knew that, with a little bit of imagination, I could use it as a basis for a fictional town, where most people know each other and if they don’t, then they sure as heck have heard of you. A small town where the pace of life isn’t based on the rush of traffic and crowded streets.
Columbia Falls is home to bed and breakfasts, hotels, restaurants, and bars, as well art and pottery galleries, antique stores and other entertainment. It seems to me at least, to be a town where it would hard to be bored in. I hail from England, and I live in Miami. A town such as Columbia Falls would be my ideal vacation location. A world away from the hustle and bustle of city life. Peaceful, tranquil and with the feeling of Americana that you really only get to see now in old movies and TV shows.
Now, I know my kids will probably object, I can hear them, ‘why not Orlando? It's boring.’ – I give them a day before they change their minds. Water rafting, horseback riding, great food and scenery that will blow their minds. As for my wife? She may prefer Paris, London, New Your or LA…but I am sure she would be charmed by this town that sparked my imagination and that feeling of stepping back in time. So, next time you are thinking of taking a holiday of the beaten track, why not consider a small town, with amenities to suit all and a welcoming attitude. You never know, it may just inspire you.
If you enjoyed, Will The Real Forest Pines Please Stand Up, you may enjoy these books by the author.
About the author Duncan Whitehead
Award Winning Writer, Duncan Whitehead, was born in England and is the author of the best-selling and award-winning GORDONSTON LADIES DOG WALKING CLUB Trilogy. The series, inspired by the quirky characters and eeriness in the real life Savannah neighborhood in which he once lived is a humorous mystery, which boasts an assortment of characters and plot twists.
He has also written over 2,000 spoof and comedy news articles, under various aliases, for a variety of websites both in the US and the UK.
He has written further novels; a comedy set in Manhattan, THE RELUCTANT JESUS, published in April 2014 and republished in July 2015 & three short stories.
Duncan is well known for his charity work, kindness to animals, children and old people; and, of course, his short-lived bullfighting career and his hideous hunchback.
In February 2045, he invented time travel and now spends much of his time in either the future (where he has won the lottery an astonishing 117 times) and the present day.
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