Welcome to my blog, Sandra. So good to have you back. Have you ever been to
How was the setting chosen for this series?
That is an interesting story. When I first submitted the proposal to Barbour, I had set the stories in
. I had lived in Mississippi in the past
and have always felt a connection to that state. However, the editor emailed me
and said she really liked my proposal, but she had another proposal for Mississippi that she
liked too. She asked if I could change my setting to Mississippi Alabama
because the other proposal had the Battle of Vicksburg in it, and that battle
couldn’t be moved to .
I did some research and discovered that the Black Belt of Alabama on the
Alabama River was similar to the Mississippi Delta on the Alabama Mississippi
River. So I picked up my characters, the fictional town of Willow Bend, and the steamboats and moved them from the
Mississippi River to the Alabama River several
hundred miles away. It worked great for me and for the authors who had
collaborated on the
proposal, too. Mississippi
What do you like most about this collection?
I enjoyed researching the problems the South faced after the Civil War and incorporating that into the lives of my characters. Even though much of the land lay in shambles and families were left with little in the way of worldly possessions, the people of the South persevered and established a new way of life. Some wanted the old way back, and my book addresses the problems some had when the tenant farmer institution replaced slave labor. As I’ve often said about the collection, it sweeps your emotions into a time when belief in God, love, and homestead were the only roads to a renewed future.
What book are you currently writing?
I have just finished writing the first in a three book historical romance series that will release from Harvest House next year and am working on the second one. This series is set in Cades Cove,
a remote valley in the middle of the . The first
story, Angel of the Cove, takes place in 1894 when a young girl comes to the
valley to spend the summer with a renowned mountain midwife. The second book,
Mountain Homecoming, tells her daughter’s story, and the third one, Mountain
Laurel Promises, tells her granddaughter’s.
We need to book this series on the blog, too. What’s coming up next in your writing life?
I plan to finish the two books in the Smoky Mountain Memories series. Then I have another historical romance that deals with the suffrage movement that I plan to finish. I have so many ideas floating around in my head I sometimes wonder what I will be doing next.
Tell us about the stories in the collection.
Alabama Brides tells the stories of three women who lived on the banks of the
Alabama River after the Civil War. Here’s the series
description: ’s rich history comes alive through the eyes of three determined
women, willing to take a leap of faith and risk all for love. In the Columns of
learns that there’s more to home than a plot of land, as Dante searches for
God’s answer to his dream. In Dinner at the St. James, Tave’s love softens the
heart of a wounded man, leading him to sacrifice everything for her. In Blues
Along the River, Savannah
witnesses first hand God’s redemptive power in her family as He remakes her
husband into the man of her dreams. Victoria
Please give us the first page.
Here’s the first page of The Columns of Cottonwood:
Willow Bend, Alabama
A low, musical rumble like distant thunder drifted through the afternoon quiet. Savannah Carmichael paused before climbing into the buggy outside her aunt’s house and listened. The familiar sound floated from the direction of the river.
The horse hitched to the buggy jerked up his head and whinnied at the deep-pitched drone. Jasper Green, her aunt’s handyman, stroked the horse’s back and grinned. “There’s the whistle. The Liberty Queen done docked. I ’spect we’s be seein’ lots of folks flockin’ to town.”
Excitement washed over her as it did each time she heard a steamboat arrive. The Montgomery Belle, the Carrie Davis, the Liberty Queen, the Alabama Maiden—she knew them all and recognized their distinct whistles. Today she’d get to see the Liberty Queen, because her route would take her by the landing. She never tired of watching the passengers from the big paddle wheelers walk from the boat up the hill to the small port town of
Willow Bend, . Her mind would
whirl with all sorts of visions as she imagined herself a passenger in
unfamiliar locations and disembarking with enough money to buy Alabama
whatever her heart desired.
She smiled. “Wouldn’t it be wonderful to sail away on a steamboat and leave all our problems behind?”
Jasper pushed his tattered straw hat back and gazed up at her. “You’d just have to come back sometime, Miss ’Vanna. Besides, it takes money to ride boats, and I doan think we’s seen much of that ’round here lately.”
She laughed, smoothed her long skirt, and reached for the reins Jasper held. “Not since the war at least. But one day that will all change, Jasper. I just know it will.”
“Yas’m. That’s what you been sayin’ for a long time now, but I ain’t seen no
taxes being paid.”
A sigh rippled through her body. “No, not yet, but I have faith God’s going to provide us with the money somehow.”
These sound interesting. Where can the readers find you on the Internet?
I always enjoy hearing from my readers.
You can find me at my website at http://sandrarobbins.net,
or on my blog at http://sandrarobbinsbooks.blogspot.com
I also blog once a week with three other authors at http://theborrowedbook.blogspot.comReaders can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you, Sandra, for giving us a glimpse into your writing life.
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Alabama Brides (Romancing America)
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