Walking across the Shopko Plaza parking lot, an expanse of concrete more appropriate to an international airport than a smallville stripmall, the sun simmering in a hot towel of cheap corn oil, I thought: what if I set my novel in Slovakia. Then I could use my Salt Road idea -- damn, the name could be The Salt Road -- and put the cosmopolis in Nitra, castle, shopping mall, panelaki, Big Tesco, everything one might want. The Nitra River is now a torrent. Energy (which drives data) for salt, hence the Salt Road from Krakow. Towering peaks, waterfalls, wild Gypsies, real wilderness.
The best elements of two stories combined in one.