I’m just now finished with a fun but kinda strange writing experience.
I wrote three geniuses. Brilliant sisters. They’re not only naturally intelligence but they are highly educated by a mother and father who know these girls are all the
children they’ll ever have. And the father has a lumber dynasty. He owns a mountain, but he is also invested in a whole lot of fast-growing companies in boom-town San Francisco in 1870.
Women could go to college then, but it wasn’t common and it wasn’t easy. And beside these parents want more for their daughters then a genteel lady’s education. They want to raise up women to lead, to manage men, to hold their own in a hard world that can be cut-throat on occasion.
So they’ve hired vacationing college professors, paid for the best tutors, and their father has taken them along with him to spend time with his lumberjacks and truly learn the business.
This was all, as I said, a lot of fun. Here’s the strange part.
I realized very early on, these women were all a whole lot smarter than I am.
So how to you write geniuses? I think I’m pretty book smart. But these women know math, science, surveying, chemicals, engines, force. They’ve learned to build, they understand the strength of steel and the strength needed to brake a train car, loaded with logs, hurling down a steep mountain train track. And also the power needed by the engine to pull that train back up loaded with passengers and supplies.
Me? I got a C in Algebra 1, and like a freakin’ coward, never took a math class again.
But I got great grades in English, especially the semester we did literature.
So I had to write really smart women. Heaven knows if I succeeded but I had fun making my characters just a little out of step with the rest of the world. I had them know how to blow up a mountain—and I mean make the calculations so the mountain ends up with a tunnel through it going just the right direction, not just blasting rocks to bits. But the women don’t know how to wash clothes or turn a haunch of venison into a meal for ten people.
And they need to do it because I start the book with them running for their lives. And then they have to hide from their cruel stepfather. They disguise themselves as servants. And realize they might not be as smart as they thought they were because they don’t know how to be servants and pretty soon no one is buying their act.
The series starts with a bang as they make their escape. Book #1 is The Element of Love, coming March 2022. Soon!
We’ll see if I outsmarted myself.
Books #1 and #2 are available to pre-order now.
Book #3 A Model of Devotion should be up soon.
The Element of Love
After learning their stepfather plans to marry them off, Laura Stiles and her sisters escape to find better matches and claim their father’s lumber dynasty.
Laura sees potential in the local minister of the poor town they settle in, but when secrets buried in his past surface, it will take all they have to keep trouble at bay.