California/Oregon Trail

So, what’s going on?

In an ultimate flouting of the current writer/publishing “rules”, I write both contemporary romance and historical fiction. Granted, I am concentrated mostly on contemporary romance right now, but there is one historical fiction book that, if you have been following my blog for any length of time, you know I’ve been working on for over a decade. And in this book, my protagonist travels from New York to Sacramento via the Oregon/California Trail.

If there is anything good that has come out of COVID, it is the ability for office workers to work remotely, which means, as I’ve been discussing for months now, that my husband and I have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to travel without using too much time off (me: driving; him: working). Which also means: I am not going to lose this chance to provide real-life experience while editing this book. And so tomorrow, the 28th of May, starts the adventure of a lifetime.

One of my (almost) lifelong dreams has been to travel the Oregon/California Trail – specifically, the California Trail, but it follows the same path as the Oregon Trail until you reach Idaho-ish area (depending on when the emigrants chose to split off), and what better reason to do it than to conduct research for a book? So, that is precisely what we are doing, but with a few detours…because why not take the opportunity to fulfill a few other bucket list items, like Yosemite and Vegas?

The book I am researching is entitled A Picture of the Past, takes place in 1859, and is about a spoiled, rich girl and her family, who are torn from their life of luxury when they lose all their money. Forced to take the Overland Trail in a search for a new life, Elizabeth must learn the value of family and the meaning of sacrifice when her parents die and she is left to care for her young siblings.

Starting tomorrow, my husband and I will start from our home in VA, head to St. Louis, and follow the same path that the Johnson family would have taken…with, as mentioned, a few detours.

There are three main ways to follow me along the journey:

  1. Instagram: I will be using stories to follow each step as closely as possible, as well as posts in my feed to document “larger” stops.
  2. Facebook: This will really just be copies of my Instagram posts (not stories, though), and is mostly for those who don’t have Instagram or only want to see the big stops. In addition, it will alert you every time I do a blog post.
  3. Twitter: The least detailed, my twitter feed will offer quick glimpses into my journey if you just want the basics.
  4. Stay Right Here: Yup, I’ll be doing daily blog posts (partially based on internet availability – but the goal is daily) detailing the stops made that day, providing more of the historical information that may be applicable for my research, and, occasionally, providing excerpts of my drafted book!

I look forward to seeing as many of you as possible join me in fulfilling this lifelong dream, and if you have any questions along the way, ask all you want!

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