Monday, February 8, 2016

Emerging from hibernation--with a new book! by Jane Kelley


Hibernation: the condition of an animal spending the winter in a dormant state.

The groundhogs sleep in their special winter burrow. It's deeper than the other one––below the frost line––so that the temperature will be moderate. The groundhogs have bulked up before going underground. In cold climates, they won't wake up for six months. They'll be thin and hungry. But the world has tilted in their favor and they can find food again. Groundhogs are one of the few species that undergoes a TRUE hibernation.

Writers are another. We spend the summer and the fall building up our reserves. Creating the idea. Finding the voice. Adding details to our characters. Researching and rewriting. Discovering the arc. Incorporating feedback. We are completely obsessed with our characters and their world. Every thought circles back to our heroes. How to raise their stakes. How to describe that moment. How to end that scene. It's a fun, intense time. Thank goodness the days are long because there is so much to do. After the manuscript is turned in to the editor, there’s a new period of frantic fixing. The copy editor approves. Hooray! The cover is revealed. It’s all so exciting.

And then there is nothing. For months. And months. 

But it's okay. Really. Because, like our friends the groundhogs, we have stored up what will sustain us. Our vision for our books. Our belief that they matter. Our love for what we do. 

Finally it's Pub day. We come out of our burrows and introduce our books to the world.

Hello, everybody! Meet Mary Jemison, a courageous young woman who lived during the French and Indian War. She was captured by French and Shawnee warriors. Her family was killed. After she was adopted by the Seneca, she had to learn how to live with them. It wasn't easy to adapt to a new way of life, but she did. Could she love them enough to want to stay in their world?

I share the pseudonym E.F. Abbott with three other amazing writers who have also written books BASED ON A TRUE STORY.  For more information about the series, click on this link.

5 comments:

  1. Your analogy about groundhogs is pretty spot on. I sometimes feel like I don't stored up all I should during those wait times, though. :) Books based on true stories are always intriguing and Mary's definitely sounds like that.

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    1. Thanks! Truth was definitely more powerful than fiction in Mary's case. And you may have more reserves than you know : )

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  2. Love discovering stories about past "unsung" heroes...especially women. Sounds like a great book, Jane. Congratulations!

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    1. Mary's Seneca sisters were heroes, too, for adopting her!

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  3. I would have gobbled that book up as a young reader!

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