Saturday, March 28, 2020

Huckleberries and Ice Caves

I have just finished writing a short novella for a summer release where ice cream must be used somewhere in the story line. Although Huckleberry Happiness will stand alone, it will be part of the One Scoop or Two collection published by the Wild Rose Press. 

Huckleberry Happiness was fun to write because I wandered back to 1885 when refrigeration consisted of ice boxes, sometimes called ice closets. I also used huckleberries as the flavor, because in Pennsylvania, these little dark berries were picked and used in recipes like cultivated blueberries. The heroine, Emelia Stone, makes huckleberry pie for her bakery, but also plans to make a special ice cream dessert for a contest the Pennsylvania Railroad is having. 

An ice cave
I’ve always been interested in ice caves since one exists in Coudersport, Sweden Township, Pennsylvania. Originally, ice caves were used to store meat and for ice harvesting. So naturally, Joe Sawicki, my hero, has to own an ice company with his brother. He stores some of his ice in an ice cave and regularly delivers ice to Emelia Stone’s bakery to keep her perishable goods fresh.

How do ice caves work? Heavy cold air from outside cascades into the cave and warmer air inside the cave rise up and escapes, lowering the temperatures. The ice that forms inside makes it harder to warm the space and acts as a buffer that stabilizes the temperatures to freezing.

Although Huckleberry Happiness is still
in the production stage, here is the blurb:

In 1885, Emelia Stone and her sister must learn to operate their deceased parents’ bakery in the small town of Pennsylvania. A large mortgage looms on their family home. When her sister leaves town, Emelia is forced to handle the bakery and burden alone.

The Pennsylvania Railroad is searching for the perfect dessert for its passengers. Joe Sawicki, owner of Sawicki Brothers Ice Company, is certain Emelia can win the contest and the hundred- dollar bonus if she creates a special ice cream to accompany her popular huckleberry pies. He has loved her since they played hooky in grade school to explore the company’s ice cave.

Can Emelia find the courage to stand up to the town’s bully to win the competition? And will Joe have the mettle to express his undying love and win first place in Emelia’s heart? 

Link for Willie My, Love

Sunday, March 8, 2020

Creative Writing as an Art and Craft

Creative writing is both an art and craft. It’s a set of intellectual skills that we, as writers, must possess. We are always searching out new ideas for stories. How do we do that? Through exploring our memories, using imagination, following and researching our curiosities, and observing our world.

Creative writing is also an art of self-expression and requires that writers share their thoughts and feelings. We must write imaginatively with similes, metaphors, sensory imagery, and more. And, we must also possess a perspective about ourselves, others, and the world around us.

Lastly, all writers must have a command of the language. They must be able to learn the rules, use grammar properly, and be aware of the guidelines and techniques of the genres they have chosen to create.

This has been a busy five months for me personally. I’ve been juggling three different works at one time. I was part of the Australia Burns, three-volume anthology series, where Wild Rose Press authors submitted stories with all the proceeds targeted for the Australia Red Cross to help victims affected by the wild fires. This was a wonderful project. I’m included in the second volume with a very short story titled, The Season of Withered Corn. For readers who like a variety of short stories, check out the various volumes.

Currently, I’m working on edits, cover art ideas, a tagline, and the blurb (short description) for the digital version only of Huckleberry Happiness, to be published by the Wild Rose Press this summer. It’s a short novella with ice cream woven into the story line and reflecting the overall theme, “One Scoop or Two.” It will be released, along with other authors’ works, for summer reading. All stories will be published as single digital novellas or short stories, not as an anthology. Please stay tuned.

And of course, I want to finish the last Christmas novella which will end my Musical Christmas trilogy series. It’s titled, Lucy ~ The Clarinetist.