Thought for the day:
I have never written anything in one draft, not even a grocery list, although I have heard from friends that this is actually possible.
A gift for my writer friends:
Here are a couple of links I think you will find valuable.
This is a good time to think about writing scary stories. Even though it’s after Halloween, it’s a good time to write for next year’s Halloween issues. A great blog post about How to Write Scary: http://childrenspublishing.blogspot.com/2012/10/wow-wednesday-gretchen-mcneil-on-how-to.html
From Writer’s Digest – 7 Reasons Agents Stop Reading Your First Chapter: http://www.writersdigest.com/editor-blogs/guide-to-literary-agents/7-reasons-agents-stop-reading-your-first-chapter?et_mid=587312&rid=3028165
From Writer’s Digest – 10 Hidden Gifts of Rejection Letters: http://www.writersdigest.com/editor-blogs/guide-to-literary-agents/10-hidden-gifts-of-rejection-letters?et_mid=587312&rid=3028165
As I’ve oft stated, I read a lot of blogs and get a lot of books from other blog writers. Lots of blog writers give books away like I do, and, if I see something interesting, I enter the drawing. A long, long time ago, I won a book on a blog written by Michelle Fayard who is presently on hiatus from blogging. She wrote a wonderful review of the book All Different Kinds of Free by JessicaMcCann. I put the book in my TBR pile and it sank and rose several times before I finally found time to read it. I’m sad it took me so long. It’s quite a wonderful book.
I mentioned last week how much I like historical fiction when it is well-researched and well-written. All Different Kinds of Free is both. The story is based on important happenings in the Antebellum South that laid some of the issues bare that led to the Civil War.
Margaret Morgan was a free woman of color, living in Pennsylvania with her husband and three children, when a bounty hunter named Prigg came to her home to take her and her three children to Maryland, claiming she and her children were the property of a woman whose husband had owned, then freed, Margaret’s parents. Because Margaret had been born free (after her parents were freed), she had no papers to prove she was free. There were good people in her town who helped her, preventing Prigg from taking her, but he came back and got her later. There were court fights and even one action (Prigg vs. Pennsylvania) that went all the way to the Supreme Court, but the real story here is the story of Margaret and what she and her children endure.
“The overseer gallops up on his stallion from the other direction for his weekly inspection. He rides through the gate and heads toward the fields. He looks my way, just for a moment, and fear comes over me like a burlap blanket, all prickly and hot.”
The woman who claimed Margaret had run through her money, and her son and daughter-in-law convinced her to go after her “property.” Margaret and her children were taken back to Maryland and sold through auction. Her young daughter was kept with her, but her sons were sold away separately. The agony of losing her freedom and sons and surviving all she has to is horrible and fascinating.
Margaret was strong, a survivor, and someone the reader will cheer for from the moment she is introduced. I don’t want to tell any more about the story. I just want to encourage you to read it. It is well worth your time.
I hope a lot of teens will read this book, although it is really an adult book. But it gives such a clear and compelling picture of the horrors of slavery that it might well become required reading in high school classes.
I have a gently-used review copy I am giving away this week. Just leave a comment and I’ll put your name in the hat. Blog, link on Facebook, or Tweet a link to my blog and let me know for an extra entry.
On the book giveaway, this is for U.S. only. Sorry, but it would be too expensive for me to send books out of the country. But please leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you. Remember, if you have trouble leaving a comment, click on the title of the post and it will give you just this post with a comments section on the bottom. Also, if you haven’t signed up by email, please do. Just look in the upper right-hand corner of this page, pop your email address in, and you will receive an email each time I put up a new post. Your information will not be shared with anyone.