Specifically, it's a view from the top of Depot hill down into the Capitola Village, with just the tiniest peek of Capitola beach. Many people know this place from the perspective of tourists, but this is where I grew up. It's magical to me.
Strange California. It was the perfect opportunity for me finally to bring together aspects of my real life story with my work in speculative fiction.
As my setting, I chose Capitola and its yearly Begonia Festival. We used to go to it every year. We'd participate in the sand castle contest, and go see the Begonia parade on Soquel Creek. I always loved making big, serious sand castles (they were big and serious even when I was seven). I also loved watching the begonia floats move up and down the creek. One night, after the festival was over, one of the floats came unmoored and floated all the way up the creek to the back of our house. We were having a party with friends, and we all went down to the water and climbed onto it and took a ride before coming back home. My mom says I was about five years old. I just remember the float being SO BIG and still covered with so many flowers.
The protagonist of my story, "If It Were Meant to Last," is a bit older than I was, but she understands how magical these events are. And she gets sucked in. Sand, water and flowers are more than they seem. They are momentous and powerful.
In part because my story was so deeply emotional for me, and in part because I love my home state, this anthology means a lot to me. It's being funded right now on Kickstarter. We only have five days left, so please take a look and pass it on to your friends! My story appears alongside stories from some truly amazing authors like Seanan McGuire, Chaz Brenchley, Laura Anne Gilman, Christie Yant and Tim Pratt. I really want to see this made real, especially since the art will be done by the awesome Galen Dara.
Capitola will always be a part of me, and I really want to share it with you.