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Behind The Scenes Outlander North Carolina

Behind The Scenes Of Outlander North Carolina – An Interview with Tara Heller

June 4, 2018

Here is our second installment of Behind the Scenes of Outlander North Carolina series!  We’re answering the questions: Who are we?  What’s our connection to North Carolina and Outlander? Who and what makes things tick around here? What keeps us going through the Droughtlander? What are the Outlander stories of other obsessed fans? I hope you will be comforted to read how others deal with their obsession to our favorite books and TV series. Consider these interviews our way of providing group therapy for the seriously addicted Outlander fan!

Today we are meeting our newest admin to our Facebook group, Tara Heller.

Hi there, Tara. First, tell us a little about yourself.  

Hi everybody! My name is Tara and I live with my husband and 2 boys in PA near Hershey! I am a blogger over at www.ladyoutnumbered321.com. I love to write. I also love finding interesting historical facts and researching my family tree. I am interested in traveling as time and money allows. I recently took up the hobby of running and love to be outside in the sunshine! My happy place is the Outer Banks. (I have not been to Scotland yet, so technically I can’t say that is too yet.) And of course, I’m a big fan of Outlander!

When did you discover Outlander?

Technically January 2017, but for some odd reason, I/We didn’t get into it then. We had Starz free the end of July 2017 and that is when I got hooked!

What captivates you the most about Outlander?

The historical aspect, Scotland and the love between Jamie and Claire that surpasses all time and space!

Have you read the books and if so, how many?

Yes, 3.5 books- Voyager, Drums, Fiery Cross and now I’m smack dab in the middle of A Breath of Snow and Ashes. I know I know, I committed the cardinal Outlander sin of not reading from the beginning yet – although I saw a synopsis through Season 1 and 2, right? I do own the first two books as well, so I can read them or reference them.

Which book is your favorite?

Drums of Autumn.

What has been your favorite season of the STARZ series so far?

Season 3.

Other than The Wedding, which is everyone’s favorite, what’s your favorite episode of the three seasons?

A. Malcolm, although I just love the end of Eye of the Storm because it’s action packed and ends on the shores of America and the precursor of them discovering NC!

How do you feel about some of the changes that the writers have made to adapt the show from the books?

I think there is some rushing through certain parts. But I feel like some elements can not be conveyed on screen, you have to read them. The book is the book and the show is the show. As long as we have Jamie and Claire’s love that’s all the matters.

Who is your favorite character and why?

Jamie because he’s so diverse and has been through so much and how he loves Claire fiercely. And he’s Scottish so…

Who is your least favorite character and why?

Um well, of course, Jack Randall because he’s so evil and strange.

If you could be any character in the books, other than Claire (duh!), who would you be?

Jenny because she’s Jamie’s sister but then I wouldn’t be able to be with them in NC but I’d be in Scotland, such a tough decision!

In Season 4, Jamie & Claire come to North Carolina. Yay!!! What are you most looking forward to in Season 4?

Seeing the Ridge, but scene wise, a very special meeting between two very special people!

Without revealing any spoilers, what passage from Drums of Autumn are you most hoping will be included in the show? 

The snake in the privy situation. I was reading that part on the way to Williamsburg last year and I laughed out loud and my husband looked at me like I was nuts! I immediately thought I hope I see this in Season 4!

Diana’s books are full of history. Have you learned anything about North Carolina that you didn’t know before reading the books?

I didn’t realize a lot of the revolution occurred in that region. Living in PA, we learn a lot more about what happened up here and down to Virginia.

Have you visited any of the locations that Jamie & Claire go to in North Carolina and, if so, which ones?

Not that I am aware of or know about in my reading thus far.

How did you discover Outlander North Carolina?

I was searching for Outlander Fan groups and might have searched North Carolina since it will be in NC this season and because I love the Outer Banks.

Tell us about something about yourself that only a fellow Outlander fan could relate to.

I often think how simple it would be to live back in the colonial times without technology and just having more simple living but then again things were rough too. If Claire could do it, I could – haha. I dream of running off to Scotland.

During the Droughtlander, what have you been reading and/or watching to fill the void?

I have been reading through A Breath of Snow and Ashes. We watched Victoria- Seasons 1&2, Poldark- Seasons 1&2. We are almost done with The Crown and TURN:Washington Spies. My husband watched TURN awhile ago and for some reason I was not into it. After I caught the Outlander fever it lit a fire for period pieces!

Tara will be a contributing author for Outlander North Carolina. Among other things, she will be writing about her experience with MPC and a two-part series on herbs and their uses.
Behind The Scenes Outlander North Carolina

Behind The Scenes With Outlander North Carolina ~ An Interview with Susan Jackson

May 17, 2018

We’re going behind the scenes of Outlander North Carolina!  Who are we?  What’s our connection to North Carolina and Outlander? Who and what makes things tick around here? What keeps us going through the Droughtlander? What are the Outlander stories of other obsessed fans? Over the next several weeks, I’ll be answering those questions by occasionally posting interviews with our administrators and some of our Facebook members and blog subscribers! I’m looking forward to this series and hope you will be comforted to read how others deal with their obsession to our favorite books and TV series. Consider these interviews our way of providing group therapy for the seriously addicted Outlander fan!

Our first interview is with Susan Jackson.  Susan was the very first administrator to join me at Outlander North Carolina. Her wisdom, advice and encouragement have been invaluable to me! She has also written two articles for ONC.  So, without further ado, let’s meet Susan!

Hey Susan! Let’s start by telling us a little about yourself.

I am a mother of four who lives in coastal North Carolina, and I’m an avid Outlander fan.  Besides reading, I love cooking and baking, and music.  I am a thyroid cancer survivor and have worked in education most of my life.  I hope to one day blog about my thyroid cancer journey.

When did you discover Outlander?

I started reading the first book in 2014 before the TV series started when a friend recommended it to pass the time while in thyroid cancer treatment isolation. I was hooked once Claire went through the stones. I gobbled up every book after that, and it helped pass the time during the healing process.

What captivates you the most about Outlander?

First and foremost, Claire and Jamie’s relationship, but I love historical fiction, and a well-researched story takes you back in time anyway, so the extra time travel aspect is fascinating to think about.

Have you read the books and if so, how many?

I’ve read all eight, as well as some of the novellas and the graphic novel. I loved The Scottish Prisoner, and the short story Virgins.

Which book is your favorite?

It’s hard to choose! DOA is probably my very favorite, though.  I can understand completely Jamie’s falling in love with the North Carolina mountains.

Other than The Wedding, which is everyone’s favorite, what’s your favorite episode of the three seasons?

Another tough decision—but I have to say that I’m going to sound like a bit of a prude, but The Wedding was so awkward for me to watch (and read in the books)! I felt like I was a peeping Tom on some friends. LOL! But I loved Rent from Season 1–the scenery was amazing, and A. Malcolm from Season 3. The Paris episodes from season 2 were a feast for the eyes with all the amazing costumes.

How do you feel about some of the changes that the writers have made to adapt the show from the books?

I know changes have to be made, and I’m fine (mostly) with things that have been done so far.  I didn’t like that they didn’t have Jamie and Claire mark each other with the scars before she went back through, and I wanted Claire to remain ignorant of William. And, as much as I love the show’s version of Murtagh, I feel like that’s a change that is going to be weird for me. I hope that’s not a spoiler, since we saw him get sent to the Colonies with the other prisoners.

Who is your favorite character and why?

I love book and TV Mrs. Fitz—she’s a caregiver like me, running around making sure everything and everyone is taken care of, with full bellies and clean clothes. But I can’t say that I have an absolute favorite character.  I’m going to get tarred and feathered for saying this, but Claire gets on my nerves a lot! I can’t call specific situations, but there are times I just roll my eyes and move on.

Who is your least favorite character and why?

I really disliked Dougal McKenzie—he was a jerk, and used whoever he could to get his way.

In Season 4, Jamie & Claire come to North Carolina. Yay!!! What are you most looking forward to in Season 4?

Seeing how well Scotland substitutes for our beautiful mountains. I am always dreaming of being in the mountains, so for this season not to be filmed here but look like North Carolina, well, we’ll just see about that.

Without revealing any spoilers, what passage from Drums of Autumn are you most hoping will be included in the show?

A father and daughter meeting behind a pub.

Diana’s books are full of history. Have you learned anything about North Carolina that you didn’t know before reading the books?

I’ve been reading NC history for many years, so I was aware of a lot of battles and people and how the state began.  I was surprised to learn about the standing stones at Ocracoke Island, and since that isn’t far from me, I’ll have to pay them a visit.

Have you visited any of the locations that Jamie & Claire go to in North Carolina and, if so, which ones?

Edenton is a town I visit frequently, because it’s close.  I adore the Boone area. I’ve been to Tryon Palace, and I’ve been to Fayetteville (formerly known as Cross Creek & Campbellton) many times. Somerset Plantation isn’t necessarily in the books, but  I imagine it when I think of Jocasta’s home.

If a friend was coming to North Carolina and they could only visit one place, where would you tell them to go and why?

Edenton—so much original colonial architecture, and it’s full of history as well as historical places.

What are you watching and/or reading to survive during the Droughtlander?

I re-read the Outlander books, and love biographies. I watch Downton Abbey reruns, the Outlander shows, and Call the Midwife.

Tell us about something about yourself that only a fellow Outlander fan could relate to.

Whenever I am reading/listening to the books, I find myself thinking about what Claire would do in situations I’m in. When I was first reading the books, I would actually wake up in the mornings and wonder what Claire and Jamie would be doing–as if they weren’t fictional, and we were in some sort of parallel universe.  I thought I was nuts. Then I found other fans online and a couple of groups on Facebook and realized I wasn’t nuts. Not completely, anyway.

Susan is a contributing author for Outlander North Carolina and has previously written about the infamous Stede Bonnet in Will The Real Stephen Bonnet Please Stand Up?” and “Favorite Scene Friday – Episode 304, Of Lost Things”.  Susan is also working on a series of articles about the colonial town of Edenton. The Edenton series will be part of our summer and fall series on the real people and places of Outlander in North Carolina.