I was delighted to wake up yesterday to this lovely snowfall here in the Sangres, in north-central New Mexico. My writing/reading retreat is nearly over, and the snow was a farewell gift. I'll be driving back to Texas tomorrow, where we see snow once in a decade, if that.
It's been a productive three weeks. I dug into the Gertrude Bell books (hers and others'), not quite sure which way the material would take me. I knew I'd be working with biographical fiction, but should it center around her romances, her archaeological work, or something else? Her letters and diaries from her expedition to Ha'il in 1913-1914 have pulled me into that part of her life--her work for the British government as an espionage agent. There's so much material; I'm thinking it may become a trilogy. I've started to write and have been sharing the material with Bill, who knows the period much better than I do and can offer suggestions. It's always exciting to be perched on the brink of a new project, and I have to confess to being pretty much obsessed by it.
Meanwhile, The General's Women (the third of my historical novels published through my Persevero Press) is moving toward its March 7 publication date. There were the usual small glitches in the formatting process, but they were resolved easily and the upload went without a hitch. I love Ann McMann's cover (I'll have a post or two on the cover design/development process). The novel (the story of Kay Summersby's love affair with General Eisenhower during World War 2) is available now for Kindle pre-sale. It will also be available in paperback and hardcover on Amazon; in print and ebook at Barnes & Noble online, and on iBook. Librarians and booksellers can get the book through Ingram. Librarians, I'll also offer it via Self-e (there's a selection process involved, I think). Reviewers, you can get a review copy from NetGalley next week.
And Loving Eleanor (the story of the enduring friendship of Lorena Hickok and Eleanor Roosevelt) continues to win literary prizes! In addition to an Ippy, it has won the Library Journal's Best Indie eBook Romance award and the USA Best Book LGBT award. Another award (a BIG one!) will be announced next week, so stay tuned.
It's been good to get away from television's political charade (no TV here), but I've stayed posted on the disconcerting developments via the Internet--it's like watching a slow-motion movie of a huge bridge collapsing or the Lincoln Monument falling to rubble. The latest lunacy is absolutely incredible:
The Chinese government said Saturday it will return a U.S. naval drone seized last week in the South China Sea, a step toward defusing maritime tensions between the two Pacific powers. President-elect Donald Trump reacted to the news by telling them he doesn’t want it back. “We should tell China that we don’t want the drone they stole back.- let them keep it!” he tweeted Saturday evening.
Reading note. As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.--H.L. Mencken, Baltimore Sun (26 July 1920)