In the writing room right now ...

In the writing room right now ... I have taken down the brown "butcher" paper that held ideas, photos, drawings, and my hand-drawn maps and plot outlines for the past five or six books. I've placed all those items into three-ring binders, and cleared the deck for paintings and photographs that involve courage, as I move forward in GHOSTKEEPER, the new novel set in Lyndonville, Vermont. My 1850 Vermont adventure THE LONG SHADOW is under contract with Five Star/Cengage -- I will give you a publication date as soon as I know! Scribbling lots of poems, too. And there's a possible route to publication of the "Vermont Nancy Drew" novel I built on Wattpad (see right-hand column). Yes, I guess I do like multi-tasking! How about you?

Sunday, January 18, 2015

One Shelf Closes, Another Shelf Opens ...

Part of the research behind The Long Shadow (done, done, done -- for now!)
Last night at about 8 pm, in the little writing room at the far end of the house with one lamp on and deep winter darkness outside, I finished the revisions for an 1855 historical novel, an adventure/mystery set in northern Vermont: THE LONG SHADOW.

This journey included years of research, as well as asking a professional editor to help me prune an early draft in order to accelerate the pace and open the adventure further. Now, of course, the book moves to the part of the process where I feel much less skilled: looking for the right publisher. But I can do this!

And while that takes place, I have two more books in process that involve historical research (thank you, Dave!). Gathering the books and documents makes up maybe half of that -- and the rest is legwork and photos and thinking. For instance, here are some of the town record pages from the earliest settlement years in Barnet, Vermont. Look closely and the first one and you'll see shillings and pence! The second suggests the town was keeping track of people's work hours on some collaborative projects in 1789. Who would have guessed? There's no better way to put the late 1700s into perspective than to search for, find, gently touch, and think about pages like these. Right?




So I'm taking my vitamins, making sure to get out in the crisp January air for a bit each day, and reading the best material I can find by other authors, to keep myself overflowing into this writing life I've chosen. And, oh yes, I need to schedule a bit of work in the "reference room" to open up a new bookshelf. There's more research piling up, and it needs to be sorted, stacked, filed, and omigosh, kept in mind all the time. That's where the plot twists take root.

So, if you are reading this week -- what are you choosing to put into your own creative soil?

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