Category Archives: Guest Post

Guest Post: Merry Farmer

 

Why History Makes the Best Stories: Part 1

 

I’ve known I wanted to be a writer for as long as I can remember. The bug first bit me when I was ten years old and realized I didn’t have to wait for the teacher to assign a creative writing project to write something. But when my college years rolled around and it came time to choose a major, instead of taking the English or Creative Writing track I chose to major in History. Why? Why would I do such a thing if I knew I wanted to write?

 

As I told people at the time, and still firmly believe, I majored in History so that I would always have something to write about.

 

There’s a reason two-thirds of the word “History” is “Story”. Every dry, dusty story that we take notes on in history class, every name and date and location that we’re forced to memorize for standardized testing, has a wealth of emotion behind it. These things really happened! It sounds trite saying that, but I’m convinced that most students forget that fact as they study. But when you read the literature of the time period, when you study its art and feel its artifacts you begin to realize. Today’s history was yesterday’s current events.

 

More than that, the truth of what happened all those years ago is usually stranger, wilder, and more vivid than any modern depiction. Take the background subject of my Noble Hearts trilogy. The books are set in the reign of Richard I of England while he was off fighting the crusade. Oh!, you say. I know all about that! King Richard was the Lionheart, Prince John was an evil miser, and Robin Hood robbed from the rich to give to the poor!

 

Wrong.

The true history of Richard and John is way different and far more interesting. Richard and John were the 4th and 5th sons of the great king, Henry II. Neither of them were meant to take the throne, but their three older brothers killed each other off fighting for the crown. Richard lived most of his life in France, hated England, and didn’t speak English. John was his father’s favorite and spent a great deal of his life directly responsible for much of England under the feudal system of management. Richard bankrupted his kingdom fighting a pointless war and by being captured and held for ransom by his enemies. Richard was probably bisexual and only spent six months of his reign in England.

 

Wow. Right there, hidden in those facts, is enough plot and passion to produce an entire dramatic mini-series! And yet it all happened.

 

Some of the most fascinating plots ever were not created in the mind of Stephen King or J.R.R. Tolkein or John Grisham, they were the result of lives lived, wars fought, loves requited and unrequited. And they’re all hidden in plain sight, between the pages of your history textbook.

 

Merry’s Author Bio

Merry Farmer is an award-winning novelist who lives in suburban Philadelphia with her two cats, Butterfly and Torpedo. She has been writing since she was ten years old and realized one day that she didn’t have to wait for the teacher to assign a creative writing project to write something. It was the best day of her life. She then went on to earn not one but two degrees in History so that she would always having something to write about. Today she is a giant History nerd and a hopeless romantic waiting for her own love story to start. Her first book, The Loyal Heart, is a swashbuckling Medieval Historical Romance involving a love triangle that will keep you guessing. Both The Loyal Heart and its sequels, The Faithful Heart and The Courageous Heart, are available wherever eBooks are sold. She has also begun a new Western Historical Romance series set in Montana in 1895. The first of that series, Our Little Secrets, is now available. The second, Fool for Love, will be released in early 2013. Merry is also passionate about blogging, knitting, and cricket and is working towards becoming an internationally certified cricket scorer.

Merry can be found here: http://merryfarmer.net/

Guest Post: Lynn Thompson

Excerpt Sterling-A Montana Dayton Novel #suspense #magic

Prologue


In the deep waters off the Florida Gulf Coast the sands shifted with the winds and tides of time, scattering all that has floated down to rest on the bottom of the ocean. Once will be again the waters sighed.

When Montana wakes up every morning wearing gorgeous jewels, and surrounded by priceless gems she doesn’t know where to turn. She doesn’t remember where, or who she’s getting the glittery baubles from. To make matters worse, Max has found her and insists they continue their relationship where they left off. Montana has bigger concerns than dating Max, besides she’s not sure whether or not she can trust him. Where are the jewels coming from? And who is this guy threatening her family?


Excerpt

You know I saw her.” Sam said cramming her mouth full of cookies.

Saw who? And don’t talk with your mouth full.”

She guzzled her coke until her mouth was empty then cleared her throat.

Some red head, looked like a ghost.” She shook her head and laughed. “You’re probably going to kick me out of your house after I tell you this, but I think it’s important.”

Jamie waited patiently while she organized her thoughts.

I was hiding behind the bushes beside your house. Like I said before, I was drawn to this place.” She cleared her throat again.

Anyway there I was trying to figure out how to get your attention, and where I could clean up before I did, when this red headed girl started walking towards the wall.” She stopped and pointed to where the hidden room was.

She was white as a sheet. My first thought was wow there are ghosts here. I almost laughed out loud giving myself away. I thought no she’s probably sick, or a druggy, or something, and then just like that she walked through the wall. I was in shock, but wanted to see if she would come back out, so I waited. A couple of minutes later she was back out of the wall with a huge necklace in her hand. I didn’t get a good look at the necklace. Anyway I thought you should know.”

Jamie sat in silence, looking a little pale herself, staring at Sam.

Okay, I probably shouldn’t have told you.” She sighed. “But could you at least send me to an insane asylum where I have a roof over my head and three meals?”

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Lynn Thompson