In the writing room right now ...

In the writing room right now ... I am working on book #3 in the Winds of Freedom series, a teen adventure series set in the 1850s in North Danville, Vermont. My 1852 Vermont adventure THIS ARDENT FLAME is scheduled for June 2021 publication with Five Star/Cengage -- I will give you updates and early order information as soon as I know! I'm also writing a memoir; revising a mystery; in the midst of a novel about a grandmother and her granddaughter; and always writing poems. Yes, I guess I do like multi-tasking! How about you?

Tuesday, May 6, 2008


It's early May, and in Vermont the daffodils nod bright yellow heads and the robins call out in early morning and late afternoon -- in between, they are quiet, protecting their nests and keeping the eggs warm. I'll know when the baby birds emerge, because the parents' behavior changes so much, racing around for food.

In my writing sanctuary, I'm torn between two spring patterns myself: preparing for the launch of Molly Ballou's story, THE DARKNESS UNDER THE WATER (Candlewick, fall 2008), and writing the story that Shawna Lee is whispering in my ears -- THE HUNGRY PLACE. One book calls me out to talk with people and share the excitement and adventure. The other turns me into a robin trying to cover all the blue eggs with the warmth of my heart, quietly singing a hatching song to myself.

Next week I'll be at the Vermont Library Conference in South Burlington, reading on May 13 and 14 in the author's cove, letting Molly Ballou tell you how it felt for her to be sixteen years old, living in a small Vermont village in 1930, when her Abenaki heritage -- which her parents had carefully turned into "being French Canadian," but which her grandmother still honors -- well, to make a long story short, Molly discovered that being Abenaki could mean being threatened by the Governor and Legislature of Vermont, and especially by the nurses being sent out into the communities to look for families who didn't match the ideal Vermont image.

But I'm getting ahead of the story. After all, when the book opens, what Molly is mostly struggling with is a sort of haunting, by the very snippy voice of her own dead sister, Gratia.

That too is part of what's hidden by the spring waters in Waterford, Vermont.

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