RESEARCH: Tomatoes

I almost got tripped up by tomatoes. When I was creating the world of DIVIDED LOYALTIES, I thought I considered everything. I went through antique photos of clothes and uniforms. I drove through the countryside near Sharpsburg so I knew what Maureen saw as she marched from home to hospital and back. I read an article (thanks…

A STORY: A new nephew for Megan

Megan half expected the house to look different from the day she went away. Though it had been only a few days, she felt as if things had changed dramatically since she left to look for her brother Ben. Perhaps it was only she that changed. She watched Mrs. Johnson’s carriage drive away before taking a deep breath…

A STORY: Courage before the enemy

Doors were left ajar. Porch chairs were tipped over. Shutters were pulled tightly across shop windows. There were bullet holes in Johnson’s store and an artillery shell had left a crater next to Delaney’s tavern. The pale yellow steeple at St. Paul’s was pockmarked and cracked. A few Confederate soldiers, exhausted and dirty, lounged on…

WRITING: Maureen’s world

Writers create their own little worlds when they envision their stories. This is especially true for fantasies, fairy tales and those wonderful small town stories we have always loved. My Civil War novel takes place in and around a real town. With serious liberties that would probably drive a Civil War historian insane. But I kept…

RESEARCH: Pry House

I looked at this photo all the time as I was writing scenes about my Civil War novel, Divided Loyalties. Although the battle took place in late summer, the hospitals around the Antietam battlefields were open through a long, cold winter. Imagine trying to heal mind, heart and body inside a big barn. Imagine the…