Yesterday, as I was returning from a brief visit to the casino–one of my favorite ways to relax, if you’re new to the blog, is playing slot machines–an enormous rainbow arced across the sky, ending in the lake in front of my house. I’m taking it as a good omen! (The frog didn’t morph into a prince, but at least I held my own.)
The dogs are with me in the lakehouse office as I write this. Sadie is snoring away on the dog bed, and Bernice is cuddled up next to her.
I’m writing a new westrn, and doing research for a monumental series set during the Civil War. Since the actual writing of these books is four years out, I’m just doing the preliminary reading at the moment. I’ve ordered stacks of DVDs, and every night, I go to bed with a Confederate general. He’s in my iPod. I’m listening to Shelby Foote’s ground-breaking series and must admit, although I have both Confederates and Yankees in my lineage, I feel a pang every time the Union suffers a setback. Although I have Confederate sympathies (the Laels are from North Carolina and many still live in Virginia and Georgia), I cannot, of course, condone slavery.
Nation against nation, brother against brother. The whole pyschology fascinates me. The West I write about in books like “The Man from Stone Creek”, (paperback coming out the last Tuesday of this month) and “A Wanted Man”, (hardcover, June 26, absolutely fabulous cover) would not have happened without the Civil War. In fact, the escapades of men like Jesse James, as I’m learning now, were simply continuations. The Confederate cause died hard indeed.
You’re probably going to hear more than you want to about the Civil War, over the next few years. I’m keeping a special journal about the process of planning the books–we’re talking geneology charts, the whole works.
In the meantime, expect more Mojo books (a LOT more), and another western contemporary trilogy, starring the Creeds of Montana–distant cousins of the McKettricks.
God, I love this job!