Amber, before we get started, you have a new baby in your home. Tell us how your writing life has changed since the arrival of your little sweetie.
It's changed quite a lot, actually. When
was born, I was also under a deadline, so the entire first 6 weeks of her life, I was trying to balance the lack of sleep along with finishing a book. I had planned to get it done before she was born, but that didn't happen. Thanks to my husband's help in the evenings when he got home from work, I was able to get it finished in time, but it happened at the 11th hour, just under the wire. Now that she's 5 months old, she's settled into a nice routine for both of us where I can let her sit and play while I work around her. Still, I'm careful to not get too involved that I ignore her. My writing time has diminished, and I have to schedule it better, but it works. Victoria
LOL--Mommyhood--busy, but such a blessing. Tell us about the books you have out before we discuss your current release Hearts & Harvest.
My first series is set in Colonial Delaware and focuses on the dawning of our new nation before the Revolutionary War with the 3rd book taking place during the war. They follow the same family through 3 generations, covering the Great Awakening, the French & Indian War, and the Revolutionary War as viewed through residents living in
3 in 1 Collection
When you started writing Hearts & Harvest, did you realize how prophetic it would be economically?
Not at all. I had birthed the idea a full year before I even started writing it, so the economy in present times hadn't reached the critical point yet. The Panic of 1893 was a major event in
and full of potential. As I worked my way through the story, though, everything in present times changed, and I was able to weave in discussions, circumstances and experiences for my historical characters parallel to what many people were experiencing today. It was interesting to read how people responded overall to the financial crisis over 100 years ago and how people responded today. Quite a difference, and unfortunately, not in a good way. Detroit
In Hearts & Harvest, there are coop-type farms to help those who are struggling economically. How do they work and how did you do the research for these? Did they really exist back then?
Yes, they really did exist. When I do my research, I spend a lot of time painstakingly reviewing the facts and details to portray the setting and the people accurately. I might write fiction, but I do my best to make the history and characters come alive to the reader while giving them an accurate view of how life really was. A principal resource was the historical society of
The co-op farms worked just as I depict them in my book. Those with land not being used donated the land for public use, but they didn't lose ownership. It was more on a loan to the city. Families in need of assistance were assigned plots on that land to farm. What they produced, they could use to feed their own families while providing all of the extra to the city to be distributed to those who couldn't work or the general market to be sold.
What one sentence hook can you give us from the perspective of each of these characters-- William and Anabelle?
William - He thought he'd lost it all, and even stumbled in his faith, but a visit from a society darling helps him return to his roots once more.
Annabelle - Looking to do more than offer handouts to those in need, she never dreamed she'd unearth love beneath the sometimes unforgiving land.
What character in Hearts & Harvest was the most fun to write and why?
Hmm, the most fun? I'm not sure I can isolate just one. My characters tend to take on lives of their own, and I'm simply along for the ride. Each one tends to have a shining moment, not just the hero and heroine. But, I did have fun writing Annabelle with her quick wit and sometimes sharp tongue, but also her never ending desire to help people and her genuine good-natured spirit. She might have appeared naive to some, but deep down, she possessed quite a bit of intelligence and compassion.
You have a great website and blog. You're also a web designer. Tell us about what we'd find on your website and blog. Or better yet, ask us a question and we'll dig around on your website to find the answer and post it here in our comments for our giveaway of a copy of Hearts & Harvest.
Thank you! I've gone through many designs before settling on this one, and I feel it captures the essence of what I do more than the others. And yes, I design web sites as a way to help pay the bills when royalties and advances aren't forthcoming or aren't as much as anticipated.
As for the question from my site,
go on a scavenger hunt at
to find out what in the history of my writing career
inspired me to start writing historical fiction.
Please visit Amber Stockton's website and return here
leaving your answer in the comments.
Please leave your email address in this format
so we can contact you if you're chosen for the giveaway.
Yourname [at] whatever [dot] com
Yourname [at] whatever [dot] com
Amber, thanks for chatting with us today. We really enjoyed visiting with you!