Asthma Cigarettes from the 1920s inform subplot of THE STILLS, by Jess Montgomery.
Dear Reader: Get to know Mabel Walker Willebrandt
While researching Prohibition for THE STILLS, set in 1927, I learned about U.S. Assistant Attorney General Mabel Walker Willebrandt, the highest-ranking woman in federal government in her day. Mabel was the second woman to receive an appointment to...
“Did the Government Purposefully Poison Drinkers During Prohibition?”
My Kinship novels are set in the mid-1920s, and Prohibition was national law from 1920-1933, so of course Prohibition is a prominent thread woven into the background of the first two novels in the series. ...
Dear Reader: Fascinating History Books as Background for THE STILLS
Two weeks ago, I wrote about a goofy aspect of my experience doing historical research--diving down a research rabbit hole about, of all things, egg beaters! But of course I do a lot of serious background research for each of my novels. For THE...
Dear Reader: On Egg Beaters and Researching Historical Novels
I'm often asked at writer's workshop and book club gatherings about how I research my novels. Do I: (a) Do all the research and then write my novel? (b) Do a bit of research, and then mix writing and researching? For me, the answer is B, with a...
Shocking (but True) History in THE HOLLOWS
A shocking piece of American history is woven into the background of THE HOLLOWS.
More about Maude Collins, the Real-Life Inspiration for Lily Ross
The story of the true-life inspiration (Maude Collins, Ohio’s first female sheriff in 1925) for Lily Ross.
The Battle for Blair Mountain
The Battle for Blair Mountain–a stunning, historic uprising that many have not heard of.
A Personal Twist on Women’s History Month
Our family history includes a 1912 re: women’s suffrage from then President Fess of Antioch College.