Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Wednesday Writing: Return to the Island

So having cleared my desk for a few days, I am going back to a far too neglected story, which is a serial for The People's Friend. I first started writing serials for The People's Friend back in 2001, and while I have slowed down some with my other writing obligations, I am glad to keep with them because I love the magazine so much. Today I am working on Return to the Island, the third serial in my Amherst Island trilogy--and dear readers, I know you have been waiting for the novel form of On Renfrew Street! I will deliver, I promise! In the meantime here is a snippet from part 4 of Return to the Island, which is set in Ontario, Canada right after the Great War.

Ellen pressed her cheek to Rose’s in farewell before walking with Jed back to the Lyman farm.
     “How is your father?” she asked as they walked through the copse of birches, the pond shimmering under the July sunshine. “Is he coping all right? I haven’t seen him much of late.”
     “He’s fine,” Jed answered. “Struggling on as everyone seems to be these days.”
     “Thank you, Jed, for going after Peter last night. I’m ashamed that I didn’t even think about how the noise of the firecrackers would upset him.”
     “Why would you?”
     “I heard the shells too,” Ellen reminded him. “I know I didn’t fight like you or Peter or any of the island boys did, but I remember the Front.”
     “Of course you do.” Jed sighed and shook his head. “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to sound…”
     “It’s all right.”
     As they approached the Lyman farmhouse, Jed went for the wagon while Ellen waited by the front steps, enjoying the sunshine on her face and trying not to give in to the worry that was cramping her stomach—the Wilsons, Peter, the guests coming tomorrow… For a few minutes she wanted not to have to think about it.
     “Ellen.” Jed’s voice sounded surprisingly light as she opened her eyes. He stood in front of her, the horses hitched to the wagon. “I thought you’d fallen asleep there for a minute.”
     “For a minute I almost did.”
     Jed stretched out his hand and Ellen took, trying to suppress the flurry of feeling his dry palm sliding across hers created in her. The last thing she needed was to reignite her old feelings for Jed. 

Check out the serials and short stories in The People's Friend, which comes out every week. They're wonderful! 

If you want to read about Ellen and Jed from the beginning, Down Jasper Lane is available digitally here. It is my homage to the beloved Anne of Green Gables, an orphan story set in turn-of-the-century Canada, but with a different twist.