Twilight – Forks

[September 2008 edit: check out this link to a story about how the Twilight series has positively affected Forks:Vampire tourism’ breathes new life into small town

Also, the Forks, WA Chamber of Commerce recently added a great new page to their site called “Twilight Points of Interests*.” Enjoy!]

  1. “See? Twilight is a force for good and light and puppies and cupcakes! It has positively affected Forks! WORSHIP, DAMN YOU ALL!”
  2. Of COURSE the town of Forks is pro-Twilight. It’s their only claim to fucking fame! Aside from the…. and the…. the thing…. yeah, it’s their only claim to fame.
  3. And who is this Seth person, you may ask? Why, it’s Smeyer’s webmaster/brother, who vaguely maintains the site while keeping any Evil Missives Of Criticism from reaching his sister’s sensitive wittle ears. He’s a perfect example of why your webmaster should not be a relative.

In the summer of 2004 I snuck up to Forks to check it out; it was the first time I’ve ever been to any part of Washington. I took my sister Emily with me—she was a really great sport considering that she was seven months pregnant at the time.

… because I guess you couldn’t wait a few months until she wasn’t bloated up like a hippo on steroids? Wasn’t there some other relative you could drag to another state for random sightseeing?

We flew from Seattle to Port Angeles in a “puddle jumper” (another first for us both)

… in a tiny spaceship? I would hope it was a first for them!

I’m going to assume that they were talking about a small plane or something. Why didn’t they take a rental car? It seems easier!

and then rented a car and made the drive down to Forks.

…. I don’t get it at all. According to google maps, it’s only a couple hours from Seattle to Port Angeles, and only 3 hrs and 13 minutes from Seattle to Forks. So why the plane?!

I was afraid, as we left Seattle, that I was going to be disappointed.

“I was afraid that I would be greeted by vampires who DON’T sparkle and have marble-hard skin! My greatest fear! Aside from getting older than eighteen!”

My Forks had become such a real place in my head that I was sure the reality would have some kind of jarring difference. It wouldn’t look like the pictures, maybe, or there would be some huge flaw that would make my story impossible in that setting.

…. which is why it’s a good idea to not write fictional stories in real places that you have never been to. Jim Butcher didn’t get away with it, so how come Smeyer does?

Just look at those two pictures. Who honestly would be attracted to the second one?!

But as we flew in, low over the densely green hills with the incredible Cascades Mountains touching the clouds to the south, I stopped worrying.

“Forks was entirely populated with goths, daredevils and wild drug-fueled raves every night. But the scenery was spot-on, so I KNOW I got it right!”

Of course it was raining when we landed. It rained both days that we were in Port Angeles.

It’s the fucking Pacific Northwest. Of COURSE it rained. That’s like saying, “We went to new Mexico, and it was sunny” or “we went to northern Alaska and it was chilly.”

However, the sun shined the entire time we were in Forks. I’m still not sure if that was a good omen or a bad one.

I’d say that was God giving you the finger for whining so much about the weather you had NEVER SEEN.

And it’s “the sun SHONE,” oh bestselling authoress.

Every local we spoke to commented on our rare luck.

Apparently most tourists are eaten by bears or sacrificed to the Elder Gods.

Being in Forks was the most incredible experience.

“They had the BEST drugs. Not that we partook, of course!”

There were a few small differences: the logging presence was much more evident than I’d pictured it—the clear cuts put a bit of a lump in my throat, and the constant, gigantic log haulers barreling down the wet highway made driving a thrilling adventure—and it was sunny, as I’ve mentioned. Otherwise, it was eerily similar to my imaginings.

So…. in other words, it was totally different in all the ways that count except being small and boring.

Walking down Main Street, shopping at the Thriftway (I still have that receipt!),

Whoopee. Good for her. She went to a grocery store.

driving up side streets until we found a house that could have been Charlie’s,

Doesn’t tell us much, since Charlie’s house is not very well described.

and then turning the car around only to find a beat-up, once-red, early-fifties Chevy truck parked across the road… The word surreal gets overused a lot, but this really was like walking around inside of a dream.

“Quickly we drove to the spot where the Cullens mansion was located in my book, so I could fling myself at the sparkling marble hottie I knew would be there. Ravish me with your assholery, Edward!”

We spent half a day at La Push, and that was even more uncanny. Unlike Forks, there were no differences between my imaginary La Push and the real thing.

… uh, it’s been a while since I read the books all together, rather than just in chapter-sized chunks or looking up weird shit in Breaking Dawn. But I seem to remember that we hardly see anything of the La Push reservation except a couple of small buildings and some shirtless teenagers running through the woods. Unless they had chopped down all the trees, how the hell could it NOT be the same?!

I spent the morning expecting every minute that we would turn a corner and run into Jacob Black.

“After I molested the sixth shirtless teenage boy that day, they asked me to leave.”

(my boys are going to love that beach! (I have a glass jar full of the rainbow colored rocks I collected at First Beach sitting on top of my computer desk as talismans against writer’s block.)).

… I don’t get it. Why would beach rocks keep away writer’s block?

Also… ever heard of BRACKETS?

Next time, I hope it rains.

“I crave bad weather to reaffirm my book’s perfection!”

(Personally, I hope she arrives during a drought)

So in conclusion, this is possibly the dullest trip I’ve heard of anyone taking. She went to a grocery store! She saw a truck! She walked down the street!


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