Hidden Mickey 2: It All Started…

A common question I get is: “Where do you get all your ideas for the books?”
It’s a good question and one that I had to think about before answering.
My first visit to Disneyland was way back in 1962 – and it was love at first sight. I have been going regularly since then, at least once a year and sometimes more often. There have been many changes to the Park over the years and I have seen a lot of them. There are rides and attractions that I enjoy and go on every time I visit. There are shows where I know most of the words of the songs by heart. So, part of the answer to the above question would be that I know the Park so well, it is somewhat easy to pick out sections I want to share with others. Sometimes the part I choose for a particular novel is no longer still at Disneyland, so I get to bring it, and its creator, Walt Disney himself, back to life in flashbacks.
Another part of the answer would be from all the research I do. Even before I started writing the Hidden Mickey novels, I was already an avid reader about the Park and about Walt. I have many of Disneyland’s souvenir books throughout the decades that I have been reading and re-reading since the late 1960’s. There are many fan pages on the Internet that have staff writers who worked at Disneyland, or, more excitedly, worked with Walt and are now sharing their experiences with all of us. There are also biographers whose works are quite fascinating. I read their words and try to look behind the scenes and find some part that might have more to it than what was said.
One example of this was found in a popular, quite lengthy, biography about Walt. The writer was talking about the tour Walt did in South America in 1941. This was the time the strike was going on at the Studio and it was tearing Walt apart. His good friends told him he needed to get away for a while and they all decided that a tour throughout South America would be just the thing. He could get some rest and do some PR work. Well, it sounded good on paper, but Walt ended up being mobbed everywhere he went. He needed to have some alone time. According to the biography, once they got to Columbia, they “commandeered a boat and went 40 miles up the Amazon River.”
Now, that was all the biography said about that little side trip. As I read, my eyes kept coming back to that one sentence and I wondered, “Hmmm, wonder what happened when they got up the Amazon?” And that was all it took. I include that PR trip in my second novel: Hidden Mickey 2: It All Started… and take the readers up the Amazon with Walt and show what happened on that overnight trip. Walt was given something special in the jungle – something that showed him that all his dreams would actually come true at a time when he was beginning to doubt everything. With a deft blend of fiction and fantasy, I set up for the future novels with the recurring theme of the red diamond Hidden Mickey pendant and its special powers.
I hope you will check out this exciting continuation of the Hidden Mickey story as Lance Brentwood teams up with a new partner and delves even further into the fascinating history of Walt Disney.

The inviting porch on Main Street
The inviting porch on Main Street. What is behind the locked door?? The answer is in Hidden Mickey 2: It All Started…