Friday, February 4, 2011
Stories Meant to be Written
Some stories should be written, like the time I fell for the little Italian guy and took a station wagon full of leather goods from Gloversville to Myrtle Beach where you had to get a permit to make a left turn – see what I mean? My life was like some demented sitcom.
I will say one thing, though. It took me to places I never dared look at before – which, according to Arline Chase and Stephen King were necessary to do the big thing, that being a best-selling American author.
To that end, I have written somewhere about a score books: novels, a mystery, a how-to, a series, a knock-off, and more than a few mixed genre books. Is there a genre called Historical Women’s Stories?
There should be.
I wrote a lot of them – because they were stories that had to be written and they didn't leave me alone until I did write them.
We learn all sorts of stories in grade school where George Washington has an amazing resemblance to God and men really did walk on the moon during your father’s lifetime.
These stories were put in books and then more properly called history. If you notice, women are not part of the equation. Who ever heard of Herstory?
I have, because I write history from a woman’s perspective. Men went westering and conquering mountains, but women were the glue that held the family together. Living on the Delmarva Peninsula has suggested a number of stories ask us to look at its history through the eyes of a woman.
If a woman is tending to a child with the croup and has to hold the child over a bowl full of boiling water -- for which she also chopped the wood and carried the pail from the well – that’s a story that wants to be written. Folks have it easy these days. I haven’t carried wood nor water for years, but I knew those chores well enough to help others see what such a life might have been like without running water and electricity.
As such, I have set my Chesapeake Heritage Series the task of showing what the history we know was like for our formothers. Each book casts a light upon a certain period of cultural development on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Mary Charles arrives as an indentured servant. Hannah’s mixed blood has her drummed from the colony. Jane endures the fires of a marriage goes wrong, and Jewel tells us about a world without sight.
A new novel set in the same made-up area called Somerset (but not necessarily within that county) jumps time to the end of World War One and the story of cannery girls puts them in terrifying jeopardy.
Are these the real stories of the women who came before? Not really. The men stuff is important, but a good woman is behind every man… Remember? But hardly anybody wrote that down. That said, I have to honestly want to say they are fiction.
In the end these are the stories that wanted to be written. I hope someday they will also want to be stories you want to read.
Thanks for stopping by,
PS: Keep on the sunny side!