Best selling authors are able to write their books wherever they choose: a bungalow on Cape Cod, a cottage in Key West, a cabin in North Dakota, a private island in the Caribbean. The rest of us do our writing in the spare bedroom.

I know a place that is the equal of any cottage in Key West or bungalow on Cape Cod for a writer seeking peace, seclusion, and inspiration. Swannanoa sits atop the crest of the Blue Ridge Mountains on the border of Nelson and Augusta county. The house is enormous and the grounds are as beautiful as the panoramic view of both the Shenandoah and Rockfish Valley. I know because I’ve been there. I can imagine sitting at my desk in a room on the top floor, a writer’s aerie high above the Rockfish Gap, creating a masterpiece that will propel me to the top of the best seller list. This is Walton country, the iconic television family that introduced the world to life in rural Virginia during the thirties and forties. Walton’s Mountain ( Schuyler, Virginia ) is not far away.

I can’t afford to buy Swannanoa or a private island just yet, so, in the meantime, I’ll find my inspiration where I can.

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