by Greg Ruth
The setting of any story can be a powerful character unto itself. It can inform so much about a story as well as the characters who inhabit it. Largely the settings for my own books tend to be imaginary, so getting a chance to actually visit, touch and document was something completely new. This wasn't just grabbing little pieces of places and assemble them into a fictional environment as I did with The Lost Boy, this was going be all about the whole place. Something that would echo down weeks and months later as I continued to work on the book afterwards. The sense of tourist wonderment at being able to stand in spots that others we were describing in our story was pretty powerful and however vicarious or tangental, real.
|Panel from INDEH as Goyahkla gathers the tribes|
|Ruins outside of Sky City,|
Our country is a comparatively young one, and it struck me there that in many ways this was our most ancient of history. And really it was just a few generations ago. The agelessness of the area stood in sharp contrast to the truly profound changes that occurred here over the course of a single lifetime. Despite our rapidly shifting world, I would argue no time before saw as much revolution as did Geronimo, Naiches and their generation during their lives.
|Panel from INDEH in the years before the Apache Wars|
|Forest of pines near El Morro, New Mexico|
|Near Sky City Navajo Reservation, New Mexico|
|Panel from INDEH as Goyahkla makes his case to the tribes before their assault on Arizpe|
|Pueblo atop El Morro, New Mexico|
|Standing atop El Morro, New Mexico surveying a site for a scene in part three of INDEH|
|Panel from INDEH at Ojo Caliente with a young |
Naiches, Goyahkla and Cochise
|Panel from INDEH as the first white land surveyors begin to arrive|
One of the most remarkable aspects I touched on earlier was the almost momentary changeability of the landscape. we would literally be driving through a dusty old trading post town set off the highway, find ourselves amidst a lush forest of pine trees and then onto wide open sage brush fields populated by roaming horses casually making their way.
|Panel from INDEH of the Ward farm before the escalation towards the Apache Wars|
|Warning sign atop Canyon|
|Flashback panel from INDEH depicting Goyahkla and his oldest son|
|Massacre Cave in Arizona near Monument Valley|