Waiting for a book in production conjures up a combination of excitement and drama. After concentrating and struggling with many edits, it is hard watch the little bird fly from the nest as it wings its way off to the print shop. As the author, it is hard to let it go after a couple of years of concentrated effort, and it seems too soon to watch it fly away, out of reach and beyond further guidance and tender nurturing. It is, however, time to take a few breaths, ponder what is at hand, and switch gears and concentration to marketing mode. Fly little bird, fly.
For me, the transition was helped along when I was presented with a tough question by a fellow member of Women Writing the West. I am grateful to author Carolyn Niethammer in Arizona for her insightful and thought-provoking question, which made me collect my thoughts and express what I had accomplished and produced. I will share the exchange with you here.
Carolyn Niethammer wrote:
> Joyce, I’m curious about your new book. Several other books have been written about Baby Doe. What led you to do another one? What new information or new take on her do you have? Any book of this type is an enormous undertaking and I’m sure you have good reasons to think you could do better — and I’m so curious what they were.
Hello Carolyn —
My take on Baby Doe and other characters is to go beyond myths and legends to reveal the truth and the “voice” of my characters. They are succinct reads that appeal to history buffs of all ages and tourists looking for a solidly researched historical perspective.
To find Elizabeth Tabor’s voice, I went places never before revealed. Visualize personal notes written among recipes in a favorite cookbook. I found those, along with home remedies. It was much like snooping through her cupboards and medicine cabinet. Good stuff!
If you are familiar with the work of Caroline Bancroft, my niche is a modern version of her format, except my nonfiction work is reality based. My combination of journalism and genealogy background for biography is somewhat unique. I seek primary sources for facts and I do not make up dialogue. This is the real deal, skillfully edited and crafted by Filter Press.
Good questions — thanks for asking — Joyce
P.S. Denverites: Come see me next Sunday, April 17, at the Englewood Public Library Author Showcase. With luck, Baby Doe will be with me!
I just heard that several copies are in the mail and will be in my hands for Sunday’s event. Then the fun begins!
Joyce Lohse, 4/13/11