An artist’s craft does not come from their own mind, but rather from somewhere indescribable. Authors often talk about when inspiration hits, the dishes pile up, things get set aside, and they just write before it leaves them. Writers certainly incorporate their own experiences and their own knowledge. Writers will double check dates, facts, history, making sure that everything works together. But the writer will be surprised and delighted as they actually jot the story down on paper or wildly type to keep up.
Ever since I received a spiral notebook for Christmas in 1984, I have been writing. Inspiration and the Beyond have been good to me this year. Three books in one year. (I am smidge exhausted!), including my very first novel which came out this last week.
Many times ideas will not wait for the writer. If you don’t take advantage of the gift of inspiration, it will flit on to the next writer and it won’t be long before you see “your” idea in a bookstore near you. I was lucky this one waited for me.
Two and a half years ago I sat in my apartment researching my genealogy looking for the names and tribes that my mentor had mentioned to me while we were working together. Medicine people are usually quite clairvoyant and he had told me names and places of my Native American ancestors. I found the name of the grandmother on the side that I knew was Cherokee (before I found the line on the other side as well) and pieced together her history. Her son had killed himself while gathering corn for supper one evening around 1930. His widow’s brother came from California to retrieve her and her three children, the youngest of which was my grandpa George. I did not know he was born in Oklahoma. In Chickasaw territory. During the time when Natives were being killed for their land by the oil companies. During the time that Cherokees were flocking to California, by force or by promises of riches, at that very time.
As family silence would have it, or I suppose most of the time families just don’t know, I will never really know what happened but a story so beautiful and thrilling filled my mind utilizing all the ceremonies and language and happenings of that era and swirling them into a fictional tale. My love of Little House on the Prairie and of history came painting forth. Several chapters too long and an unknown ending caused me to put it away.
Shyanne, my lovely daughter, was the only one that I let proofread it, and she inquired suddenly a few months ago about the book and where it was. I decided to open it up and see if the inspiration was still there. And to my great joy it was. Having forgotten most of it by this time, I was enthralled as I read it. Most of the latter chapters were scrapped, a new ending unfolded, and a smaller sized novel was created. I love this book. I am so thrilled to be the one to write it and bring it forth to the world to read. It is based on true events because of the history of the time, most of the herbalist events were actually my own true stories, and the ceremonies and many memories of how things were are transposed from my friends’ tales to this book. All caught together in a synonymous web of truth meeting mostly fiction. It could be classified as either teen or adult fiction. I think the prose would suit anyone and will certainly educate and entertain.
I am so pleased to present to you my first novel, Cherokee Home.