Recently I asked Fields about what she was reading. Her reply:
While I’m in the final editing stages of writing one novel, I start researching for the next. My research tends to settle around the technical aspects of the topic I’m writing about; typically non fiction, and too often dry and uninspired. Not so with the book I just finished.Visit Tricia Fields's website and blog.
I never thought I would compare another writer to Edward Abbey, but Philip Connors is in the same class with his book, Fire Season: Field Notes from a Wilderness Lookout. His style is much less confrontational, but his love for the outdoors and for contemplative silence comes through as clearly as Abbey’s own love for nature. Connors writes about his time spent as a fire lookout in the Gila National Forest in New Mexico.
What I most appreciated about Connors was his honest approach to the topic. He has the rare ability to deliver his fervent opinion about nature conservation without ever preaching a sermon. In fact, he does just the opposite as he admits his own shortcomings. He relates a story about coming across a young fawn in the woods and trying to save it. Due to his interference the fawn dies, a fact that obviously haunts him but reinforces a maxim that appears many times throughout the book: leave mother nature alone—she knows what she’s doing.
I read the book to research fire fighting and smokejumpers for my upcoming book, but I found myself lost in the story, often forgetting the technical research I was hoping to gain. What I discovered instead was a beautiful story about one man’s encounter with nature and solitude and the profound lessons that he learned.
The Page 69 Test: The Territory.
Writers Read: Tricia Fields (November 2011).
The Page 69 Test: Scratchgravel Road.
Writers Read: Tricia Fields (April 2013).