Mysterious Lodge — Features from Atonement, TN

Building a House with Magic — The Mysterious Lodge

Lous House in Snow-2

Sometimes things don’t go as planned — as you saw last weekend. Thank you so much for coming back again.  I’m also sorry you missed the Halloween treat from Isabel at Cakes and More 101.  I was going to feature a recipe from her last weekend.  Isabel has a beautiful blog, so I’m sure I will get to feature her again soon.

Update: My Writing Process

Atonement in Bloom

First an update, and I cringe as I tell you this…  For months I’ve said I will then I won’t, and I will, and then Are you crazy? There’s no way!  I was talking about National Novel Writing Month, affectionately known as NaNoWriMo.  It’s a huge, all absorbing effort to write a draft novel (of at least 50,000 words) in a single month — that month being November.  Yet my first NaNoWriMo effort produced Atonement, Tennessee.

My big novel writing push was going to be October.  But I didn’t accomplish nearly as much on book-2, Atonement in Bloom as I hoped.  So I’ve made NaNoWriMo part of my writing process.  (I’m not technically doing it, because I had already started the novel months ago.) Rather than reach for a certain word-count, my goal is for time spent writing each day. So far I’m doing better than expected.  However, part of doing NaNoWriMo is letting everything else slide in favor of writing. So there are important things that I’m not getting done.  Sigh… It’s just impossible to do enough of everything.

About That Mysterious Lodge

Lous House Inside ViewRecently Suzanne at Musings on Life and Experience commented that I was building a whole town. Her words prompted me to let this post relate to one of my favorite parts of writing fantasy — world building.  However the Atonement books are not on the scale of what they call “high fantasy,” so I really liked it when Suzanne said I was building a town. That seems perfectly suitable for my urban fantasy!

Of course an important part of creating a town in the minds of my readers is to help them see the businesses, official buildings, and the houses of the people who live there.

I needed a house for a new supernatural character.  What, I pondered, would a house look like that was built by magic?  Furthermore, what if that magic was nature-based? Finally, what if the character who would live there was very flamboyant?Lous House Inside Pool

The perfect illustration eluded me, but the grand lodge pictured at the top of the page will do nicely.  It’s a new house in Atonement, TN and it went up practically over night.  Hmmm… do you think there was magic involved?Lous House Inside Fireplace

This house is an important setting in Atonement in Bloom, so it needed to be very real to me.  I made quite a few “pins” for it on my Pinterest board for the novel.

My Pinterest pins are also part of my writing process.  Some times when I can’t get started writing, I choose one of the pictures I’ve saved and start writing about it. I may begin by simply describing what I see in the image, but it usually turns into a story.

Lew or Patrick Macnee as John SteedThe character who lives in it is flamboyant, but quirky. (Whether this character is good or bad, I’ll leave to you to decide.)  I see him as looking like an odd cross between Austin Powers and John Steed of the 1960’s TV series The Avengers.  However, he is not a secret agent or any sort of spy.  No, he’s just a supernatural being — one with his own unique fashion sense!  But I digress… More on this guy another time.

Back to the magically created house. Because of the type of magic involved I knew it had to be made of wood.  Some of you who enjoy woodworking will like this place. For this character the house had to be audaciously impressive, but also sort of… raw.  Lous House Inside Stairs

There will probably be a holiday party at this house because “Bloom,” as another Suzanne, at A Pug in the Kitchen, nicknamed my novel in progress takes place during December.  (Suzanne DeBrango has followed this blog since its early days, and I really appreciate her unfailing support.)  Anyway, I thought they might serve something like Suzanne’s hot cider recipe.

Hot Buttered Spiced Hard Cider

Hot buttered spiced cider

I hope you’ve enjoyed this visit to Atonement, TN.  Please come back again soon.

Mega hugs!



Copyright © 2015 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene

All rights reserved.

No part of this book may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission.  Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author’s rights.

All images are either the property of the author or from Pinterest unless stated otherwise.

67 thoughts on “Mysterious Lodge — Features from Atonement, TN

  1. I enjoy reading all the comments on your blog post, Teagan. Such an excellent idea for Nanowrimo, as well. Your lodge is perfect for a mystical, magical character. The image is a perfect connection to nature, where all supernatural beings derive, or so I’m told. Plus, a December celebration is perfect with the winter solicitous. I’d love the recipe for Hot Buttered Spiced Hard Cyder and look forward to your next post. Now, I’m off to my writing…cave. 🙂 Hugs and TGIF!


    1. Hi Catherine — it’s so nice to see you. I should be getting to my writing lodge (or more like corner) too. I didn’t do well with it yesterday.
      Many thanks for taking a moment to comment. Yes! I have the best readers & commenters (and that includes you)! Thanks for saying that.
      If it’s easier, here is Suzanne DeBrango’s cider recipe:
      Hot Buttered Spiced Hard Cider

      Serves 2

      12 ounces hard cider ( I used Angry Orchard Apple/Ginger)
      2 tablespoons unsalted butter
      3 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
      1/4 teaspoon ginger (fresh or powdered either is fine)
      1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
      1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
      1 tbs cognac per glass (2 tbs cognac)
      1 Cinnamon stick and slice of apple to garnish

      Add butter to small saucepan and melt on medium heat. Reduce heat to low and add brown sugar and spices, cook until brown sugar is dissolved and the mixture is paste-like. Scrape into small bowl or ramekin and cover with foil to keep warm.
      Add the cider to the same saucepan and heat on medium until hot (don’t bring to a boil). Spoon a heaping tablespoon of the spiced butter mixture in serving glass, pour hot cider into glass add the cognac and stir. Garnish with cinnamon stick and apple.


    1. Dear Sharmishtha, “shifting” like that is so difficult. You are a very resilient woman. NaNoWriMo will be back again next year. Plus they have similar events throughout the year (though I’ve never participated in those) — “Camp” NaNoWriMo is in April and in June. You might look into that…
      Wishing you a thriving Thursday! Mega hugs.


  2. Thank you for letting us know how is everything. You are building a town, that’s right! The town I would love to live in. If I could just pack and …
    Take your time, do your NaNoWriMo. You are amazing!
    Hugs!!! xx


    1. Thanks so very much for this supportive comment, Inese. 🙂 I suppose “Atonement, TN” reflects my yearning to live in a small town. I haven’t been able to get into writing mode, and you may have given me the boost i needed. Mega hugs!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for cheering me on, Patrick. I admit that I was not feeling like i could. But I’m still feeling the *ouch* from over doing it with my back this weekend. No big deal, but it does tend to take the wind out of your sails. So your words mean more than you could know. Maybe now I can squeeze in just a little writing time! My “time spent” goal for today won’t be reached, but maybe a little… 🙂 Have a wonder-filled week. Mega hugs 🐻


  3. Great house construction Teag. You’ve been a busy little beaver,lol. Great idea though to use Nano as your writing commitment. I think I shall do that next year. Understandably you can’t do everything at once, so it’s still nice to see your face and comments poking around some of the usual haunts. I’m looking forward to your holiday party. If I’m not invited, I’m crashing! LOL xo


    1. 🙂 Debby, I wouldn’t dream of leaving you out. Be planning your costume. 😉
      Yes… nearly half way into NaNoWriMo and I didn’t get around to hanging my posters until yesterday! (Does that count toward my goals? LOL) I’ve collected a few WriMo posters over the years I’ve participated. They do help motivate me, but I have to hang them first! Posters up now. Thanks goodness, because I didn’t accomplish nearly enough this weekend. Many thanks for commenting and for sharing my LinkedIn post too. I sincerely appreciate it. Mega hugs my friend!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You’re a doll Teagan. Now stop beating yourself up about fighting the clock. We all do it; I think it’s engraved in our brains. Always a treat visiting you and your words. xo ❤


    1. LOL. No REDRUM REDRUM. Although some of the characters do get up to no-good. After all, they’ve got to “atone” for something. 😀
      Yes, Lou is so flamboyant that I almost… Oops sorry. I nearly gave a spoiler.
      That’s why I’m focusing these posts on the “town” — so I can tell you about the story without revealing much of the story… I hope it’s working!
      Thanks for dropping by Kathryn! Mega hugs

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh that’s right! You’re a swimmer. I’m ashamed to admit that I never learned. As an adult I took lessons a couple of times but floating was about as much as i mastered.
      Hmmm…. maybe i need to work something about that pool into the story! Many thanks for commenting and for sharing on LinkedIn, Sally. I know you are one busy lady. Mega hugs!


  4. Your building of this town reminds me of some of the computer games we can play where we control everything including the fate of those who live in the town. This looks a happy place to live so I hope whoever lives in this lodge has a happy life. Then again, as they are a character in your book, I guess we also need to spice up their life a little, Teagan.

    Like you I get so much inspiration for writing by looking at photos. Is that the Hot Buttered Spiced Hard Cider I can smell wharfing through the lodge? 🙂 I better put another log on the big open fire. We can take that sleigh ride tomorrow. 🎄


    1. That indeed is the aroma, Hugh. 🙂 Your video games sound interesting. I’m not a gamer, so I’m not familiar with them, but still that’s cool.
      Hmmm I wonder if I could work a sleigh ride into the novel… Thanks very much for taking a moment to comment. I’m still giggling about your poached eggs. Great big hug!


      1. My poached eggs seem to be doing the rounds on the internet, Teagan. I had no idea they were going to bring so many smiles to peoples faces today. 🙂

        The lodge reminded me of somewhere that was cold and snowy, hence the suggestion of a sleigh ride. I can see us both wrapped up well with a blanket over our legs. You’ll have to do the steering though.


  5. I shall inveigle an invitation to the party but I’ll need to know what Gwydion is going to wear as I refuse to let youth- even magical youth- outshine me by much in the fashion stakes. The house sounds wonderful. I’m guessing you can go to your study and find the vista has changed to whatever suits your mood and I want to climb that staircase and see where I end up ( though my bladder hopes there’s a loo on the ground floor of course).
    Your creativity knows no bounds Teagan and I agree with everyone who says you’re creating a new town there.
    xxx The Biggest Hugs in my arsenal xxx


    1. Woah! Now *that* was a hug, David! Accepted and returned! 😀 ❤
      LOL, I wish to heaven that there was a loo on the ground floor of my home! With my teeny bladder, my legs get a lot of exercise stair climbing! So any fantasy house I "build" will have bathrooms of every name, including brass signs naming them after your blog terms, Piddle Palace, and the other fun names you come up with. 😀

      But oooh… you brought up something important. It's true that the devil is in the details…What sort of costume would Gwydion wear? He's in a rebellious and rather spiteful mood. Lately I've come to imagine him as actor Colin O'Donoghue, as he is in his part as "Hook" on the "Once Upon a Time" TV show. So maybe he'll need a pirate's costume…
      David you've actually pointed me to something that might have been a stumbling block, a slow down. So thank you very much for helping me solve that time consuming minor detail in advance. Mega hugs my friend. 🙂


  6. Oh Teagan, this is a wonderful post. I love that you allowed us in to learn more about the creative process and how you come up with idea’s. I totally agree that you are building a town, it’s a magical place and I feel so lucky to be able to get little glimpses of Bloom, it’s exciting and it’s wonderful of you to allow us in while it’s under construction. Thank you also for featuring my little drink, it’s wonderful and I am making one tomorrow.


    1. Hi Suzanne. I’m envious if you are making that cider! 😀 I’m happy (and relieved) to know these “process” posts are still enjoyable. I wasn’t sure how long they could sustain anyone’s interest. But I just can’t work on novels and do the work of the serial stories too. I really value your feedback. Thanks very much for taking a moment to read and comment. Sending you sunshine super hugs!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Like you, Teagan, I’m using the month of November to finally finish one of my too many writing projects. Good luck to you and your story, and sorry for my sporadic visits while I try to use my free time to write. See you.


    1. Hi Olga. 😀 I’m glad you’ll be at the party. This party thing seems to be taking off. I will definitely have to do another related post. Hmmm… My mental wheels are turning… It’s delightful to see you. Thanks for visiting. Mega hugs.


  8. The lodge looks like a very nice place to be and relax. I like that you will visit photos to jump start your writing process. I never though to do that, but I am often inspired by photos. I just never made the connection – thanks!


    1. Hi Dan. Yes the real-world lodge is very inviting and peaceful looking. Certainly a place I would enjoy. The version in Atonement, TN… maybe not so much for the relaxing part. 😀
      Yes, I love images. Sometimes I actively look for one. At other times I happen upon one and think ‘Hey, that’s…’ Anyway you might just take any scene that appeals to you; begin by describing it, and see if it leads to more.
      Thanks for taking time to read and comment. Huge hugs!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I want to visit!!! I want to visit!!! That looks awesome! Keep building (aka writing), Teagan, I can’t wait for more (although I will). 🙂
    I actually read your piece from last week because I showed up on email. It was awesome. And now I’ve read this treat and popped over to ‘Pug in the Kitchen’ (already following), ‘Musings on Life and Experience’ (already following), and ‘Cakes and More 101’ (I saw the word cake, yes I’m that shallow, now following) – two Suzannes and an Isabel – all these blogs are delicious, I mean, delightful. 😉
    I only have one problem with your updates, dear one, each time I read about Atonement it makes the books I’m reading seem not as interesting and I want to go back to Atonement…can you build me a house there, or I could stay at the lodge? 😉
    I shared and pinned and will come back to do more. Thank you Teagan, for cheering up my day, got to go, my banana bread (some with walnuts, others with chocolate chips) is almost ready, hmmm, what would go well with that, oh, look a recipe for apple cider!!! Yum! 🙂
    All the best today and every single day. 🙂


    1. Oh-oh… I can already see myself drifting into a tangent, building a house just for you in Atonement, TN! With a beautiful cozy kitchen for that delicious banana bread. I think i can smell it baking. OMG chocolate chips too?
      Lovely though the lodge might be, I’m not sure how well you would like the other occupant. He’s not all bad, but those few flaws are dozies!

      My friend, that is high praise indeed if I’ve caused *any* other book to seem less interesting. I can’t really imagine it, but i’ll be pleased to take your word for it. 😀
      Many many thanks for visiting and commenting. Loved your post today. Never fear — you are not alone. Mega hugs!


  10. Teagan, what impressive visuals on this post. The lodge…wooden staircase…supernatural being…own unique fashion sense! I’m putting all of that into the holiday party picture. I’m there! Now that I see your palatial lodge, it pushes me to develop my grandmother’s summer resort in my book now named Sunset Inn. Good to read you are upping word count for NaNoWriMo, instead of officially following the rules. I decided to do that too! It helps! See, you are a positive influence. Have a restful weekend. Hugs…💖💞💖 Chryssa


    1. Hi Chryssa — it’s good to see you. Ahh… your grandmother’s summer resort, how lovely. And what else would it be called but Sunset Inn! Perfect for your blog. You’ll have a lot of fun with it.
      So you’re doing NaNoWriMo? Congrats. I’m mainly working for “time spent” rather than word count. The numbers sometimes undermine my morale.
      Have a wonder-filled weekend. Huge hugs! ❤ 🙂


      1. Nope, not doing NaNoWriMo…like you, just upping time spent not word count on writing a book (coauthoring). My own book, Sunset Inn, is slow in writing. But I still have the vision, now expanded. Enjoy the rest of your weekend. Hugs back…💖💞💖 Chryssa


  11. I love the house and can’t wait for the party…..also love the idea of NaNoWriMo – Given all that you have on your plate I think it’s amazing how much writing you to accomplish every week…..of course this has a lot to do with the magical hummingbirds surrounding you and of course Atonement in Bloom and all your other writings:) Janet. xxx


    1. 😀 Tee-hee! Hi Janet. You and your magical hummingbirds are endlessly appreciated!
      Right now, everyone here is part of the “town” of Atonement, TN, so all are invited to the party. Oh darn… It’s a mascaraed — I should have asked everyone to describe what their costumes would be. Oh well — something for a future post! Mega hugs. ❤ 🙂


  12. Thanks for the advert for my blog, Teagan. This lodge sounds fantastic. Of course it is magical. I hope you’re able to get a lot of writing done this month. Mega Hugs. 🙂 — Suzanne


    1. Wouldn’t it though! I’ve always wanted a home with a view (ocean, mountains, desert — doesn’t matter). This one would certainly lend to a creative vibe. Many thanks for taking a moment to comment, John. Wishing you continued success with the launch of “His Revenge.” Mega hugs.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. The images of this house are fantastic, and so is the idea behind it for the book. I need a house similar to this, and I search stock photo sites endlessly. I hope to get an invite to that holiday party by the way, because that hot buttered spiced hard cider looks too yummy to pass up. Can I bring my camera?

    Best of luck with NaNoWriMo 2015.


    1. Mary, you’d be invited to any party I would give. Sure, bring your camera. I’ll take one of you, Ralda, and the girls. And Gwydion will doubtless have something flirtatious to say, letting you get a selfie with him. 🙂 Although you might want need to watch out for the host of this one.
      Have a wonder-filled weekend. Mega hugs!

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.