I would like to report that I’ve spent the last month locked away researching “The epic novel” which will take the world by storm, but big fibs like that are likely to come back and bite you right where it hurts most. My recent lack of posts have been due to a lengthy and very enjoyable holiday, primarily in the Shetland Islands where I participated in their Hamefarin celebrations. What an amazing place and wonderful people. I spent the bulk of my time meeting with numerous distant relatives and continuing my genealogy research, coming home with huge amounts of paperwork yet to be collated and integrated with information gained from a previous visit some years ago.
On a visit to the Tangwick Haa museum at Eshaness inspiration hit me with a bang. I found a “booklet” detailing the emigration of a particular family from that area to South Canterbury NZ in the 1870’s. The layout and detail was so interesting I decided I should do something similar. Large files of pure genealogy research provide little interest to the uninitiated I’ve found. I hope to provide a more interesting way to share the story of my family’s past with the generations following me. So while my attention to romance writing will take a back seat for a little longer – although edits of “Time to Bury the Past” were hastily completed and returned to my editor last week – I am still researching/writing. I would never consider myself knowledgeable enough to write in the historical genre but I’m finding many fascinating and absorbing tales as I dig into the past of the crofters/fishermen of West Mainland, Shetland. I’m hoping I can bring alive some of the harsh realities of the life my ancestors left behind when they made the decision to load all they could carry onto their backs and begin the twenty odd mile trek to Lerwick and onward hence to New Zealand. This project is only intended for my extended family and will bear little resemblance to my normal writing, but I hope I can fill it with enough emotion to make the people come alive for anyone who takes the time to read it.