My second completed novel is called A Magical Journey to the Past, and tells what life was like for two modern-day children trying to find their great-grandpa during the war of 1812. It’s a short middle grade historical fiction story.
John and Mary visit their great-grandpa’s ancient dugout and find an old diary. They wish they could see where he lives, and the journal takes them there. Once there they discover they are dressed differently than the people around them, and they are in the middle of a war. In their trek to locate their ancestor, they meet new people and encounter adventures such as rescuing an injured British soldier, and surviving a storm at sea. Finally, at the fort where their great-grandpa is they surrender so they can get inside. Even after meeting him, the story doesn’t end. They continue to watch the war all around them. They all make promises to one another before he returns to the fighting and Mary and John return home.
I hope this book will soon find a home.
My next book is also a children’s historical fiction and has two parts, and is called Waves of Change. The first part is about my Mayflower ancestor, Henry Sampson, who came to a new land with an aunt and uncle searching for religious freedom. It tells of the hardships he had to overcome after being left alone when those he came with died. Henry was strong and healthy, and learned to build houses, hunt, plant gardens, and gather the harvest. Henry made friends with the feathered people. Someday he would be old enough to own land, and was glad he had stayed here in a free land. His life changed after sailing across the ocean on the Mayflower.
The second section of the story starts two-hundred years later in up-state New York with Henry’s fourth great grandson, Silas Hillman. After Silas’s parents join a new church the persecution starts with the children at school teasing him. Soon the people in the town turn against the family and they are unable to sell their crops. They move west, going by way of the Erie Canal to Buffalo. Then they visit an uncle in Napoli, New York before heading to Kirtland, Ohio. The persecution doesn’t end and they move to Missouri. Several times, the militia called Silas to help protect the mobs from attacking Joseph Smith. The family was forced to move to Illinois. Silas became a commandant in the Nauvoo Legion, but couldn't stop the murder of Joseph and Hyrum.
I have not finished the edits on this book, but know it will be hard finding a home for it. I wanted to write some more back in time books to other historical scenes, but have found that children’s historical fiction books are hard to sell. I’m thinking of changing my writing techniques – maybe I need a different genre. Or maybe I need to write for adults, or about something different than history. It’s hard to make such a decision. If anyone has any ideas they would like to share, I’d like to hear them.