Last week I wrote about family, about the role it has played in my books, and about the role it will take in my next series. You can read that post here if you missed it.
This week I’m mulling the family of the Earl of Chadourn, the Landrums. This one is complicated because the earl and his countess raised her brothers the Wheatlys, and he served as guardian for his nephew, who is also Catherine’s… Well, as I said, it is complicated; you’ll have to read A Dangerous Nativity to sort it out if you haven’t already. That book is free. Those boys served as the heroes in the first three books of my Children of Empire Series.
As luck would have it, Will and Catherine had a number of children of their own. Emma appears in The Reluctant Wife. Tobey and Mary figure in The Renegade Wife, and Arthur makes a very brief appearance. The oldest of these overlap with the Mallet children I described last week, and have grown up friends with them. Sooner or later some will want their own books—they are already whispering in my ear. As with the Mallet family last week, I’ve been asking them—and myself—questions.
- What happens to a family that has led a charmed life, untouched by poverty or crises, when a disaster finally strikes?
- How does the perfect oldest member of the family behave when she causes her family enormous grief?
- What happens to a bright young man when faced with catastrophic injury?
- How do younger family members line up when a previously solid family unit begins to fracture under pressure?
- Can a parent flattened by devastating grief give his/her children the support they need to sort out their own?
- How does the perfect son put himself back together when the perfection shatters in every possible way?
- What role does extended family play in putting the pieces back together.
and of course
- What was going on around the world in the 1840s and how would their interests and talents lead them to be involved? And where will they be when they do it?
As I said last week, I plan to analyze all five families from my previous six novels and scattered novellas. I am in the process of examining them all individually and also the ways they interrelate with characters in the other families. If you’re interested, I’ve created a Facebook group for my characters; they are sorted into units by family. To follow the process and comment, you can join it here:
This week I hope to make progress on novellas for two different Bluestocking Belles anthologies. One is just getting off the ground. How about a battered old army sergeant for a hero? The other is finished and being polished. It is the sequel to last year’s “Roses in Picardy” novella that took place during WWI. In the sequel the war is over, but the world seems determined to keep Harry and Rosemarie apart. The Belles plan to announce the title and cover of the anthology on September 8. There will be prizes, and the authors will introduce their individual stories. Me too! You can join us here:
I’m also finishing up the made-to-order story that was the grand prize at my The Unexpected Wife launch party. Happily busy this week here in the urban wilds of Eastern Pennsylvania. But first, Coffee.