Before Christmas I actually prayed and asked the Lord to enable me to write the first 2 chapters of the Scottish novel that's next for me - a sort of Christmas gift. Beginnings can be hard even after weeks or months of researching. Of course, He did that and I'm so grateful for a blessed start! I'll continue praying as I write and hope to be finished with the first draft of the novel by late spring. Then it's galleys and page proofs for the novel releasing in January 2021 while continuing to edit and polish the Scottish story to submit to Revell next January, also.
I lost a month or more last spring because everyone was upended by the pandemic and lots of news & change kept coming at us. Though I can work through kid chaos, a pandemic felt out of control when my ideal work environment is peace and order. After reaching a stall on my WIP, I contacted my head editor and agent, something I never do, and asked them to brainstorm the end of the novel with me. That got me unstuck!
Ironically, my next novel involves an 18th-century pandemic that actually occurred historically, so I was able to write about that from a fresher perspective than if we hadn't been in the middle of one. The 18th-century is a far cry medically and germ theory-wise from today though. I think the pandemic has taught me to take nothing for granted, especially the gift of writing. It's a short season.
Pocahontas has always been a historical heroine of mine and I was keen to write a novel that included or honored at least some of her history. Also, the tobacco brides that came to Virginia colony have always been fascinating to me. So, this is where the idea for my new book, Tidewater Bride, came from. Would I have forsaken home and family, gotten on a dangerous ship, then sailed to an unknown colony to be courted by a complete stranger? I think not :) But I have such respect for those who did.
The easiest part was writing the children since I love children and have some of my own now grown. Undoubtedly the hardest part was getting the Indian history right. So many tribes in Virginia during that time period and so many powerful chiefs, etc. The 17th-century is very different than my usual 18th-century setting so I was researching the entire year that I wrote the novel and not relying on prior knowledge. One of the perks of being a historical author is an ongoing education!
Thanks so much for hosting me. I'm honored!