By Mette Ivie Harrison

Photography: Steve Greenwood,

When my editor came to visit Utah, I took her to Antelope Island. For the first time, instead of seeming desolate and empty, I saw it as a space that was foreign. It felt like stepping onto the moon. There were dead seagulls and ducks all along the shore, and the smell of the water was, well, “briny” is the kindest way you can put it. We walked up and down the rocks, squinting into the autumn sun. The last thing my editor wanted was a photo of a real, live bison. I tried to warn her that maybe getting too close wasn’t a great idea, but she was hearing none of that. She wanted proof she’d been to Mars, complete with the native inhabitants.

Mette Ivie Harrison is the author of “The Bishop's Wife” and its sequels, a series of Linda Wallheim mystery novels set in Mormon Utah, as well as numerous young-adult fantasy novels. She holds a Ph.D. in Germanic languages and literatures from Princeton University and is an All-American triathlete.