As a writer, you would think I could knock off a blog, no sweat. Sorry to break the news. The shorter the tale, the more trouble I have telling it. I can sit down with complete confidence to begin a novel knowing I can easily write around 100,000 words, no sweat. But tell me to write short, and I feel like I’ve hit a brick wall.
For 20 years I interviewed people about their family tales and wrote about them in a weekly newspaper column that for a time filled an entire page including photos. My readers were happy and so was I, but be darned if I can seem to continue that now that my work is mostly novels. Granted the novels are historical and research is a big part of the writing. And you would think I could equate that research to the interviews I once conducted. Perhaps I learn so much it can’t be compacted.
When I decided to write the Victorian series, it was because we happened to stop in a small town in Kansas while traveling, learned its history, and I was hooked. It would take three books to tell the stories I wanted to tell about the people who emigrated, lived, worked, and played in Victoria, Kansas. As with my newspaper columns, my stories are about people, not facts, figures, and dates.
You can imagine my delight when, while traveling in Texas after I began the Kansas series, we drove into a town called Victoria. Unlike the one in Kansas, where little remains of the Victorians who settled there, in Texas the churches and homes stand proud and well kept. But surprise, surprise, Victoria, Texas was not settled by the English nor was it named for Queen Victoria, but rather it was settled by the Spanish, is older by at least 50 years and was originally named Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe de Victoria after Our Lady of Guadalupe. Hmmm, definite possibilities for many varied stories. I must see that the third book in the Kansas series somehow moves my characters to Texas, so I can begin more interviews with people who lived that history.
For those interested in the latest on Facebook, and ways to best utilize our pages to reach more readers, check out this links from Kim Garst.
Be sure to check out Wilda’s Outlaw, the first of The Victorian Series. Rowena’s Lord is being written and Tyra’s Cowboy is in the thinking stages. All will be available in both Ebooks and print.