Friday, April 4, 2014

Tweetsie the Train

I've been flying under the radar the last few weeks finishing a project that sucked all my writing energy, drained my brain in the process and cramped my precious fingers into almost permanent keyboard-hovering claws. I'm so close to being finished I can breathe a bit this morning and catch up with my Catch of the Day. Whew!

This new project doesn't stray all that far from my Lessons Learned book about Pilot Mountain School. No, there's not school in my new book, unless you count the one phrase where I say that Uncle Claude, the main character, attended Lebanon Schoolhouse for his first three years of schooling, and very little after that.

The setting for my new project is the foothills of western North Carolina. Hey, I write what I know. I also write what I don't know, namely moonshine, and through that topic, the two books overlap. Claude was a moonshiner...more details on that later...but he was also a stagecoach builder, a very good stagecoach builder.

And that is how these two books overlap in a most delightful way.

Lessons Learned, page 265...a quote about a first grade field trip with teacher Lana Reavis:

  • One year we took them to Tweetsie Railroad theme park, with its reenactment of the Wild West. When the Indians started shooting, all the first graders wanted to sit in your lap. 
New Book, (Name still pending), page unknown:
  • All that was missing in the mock western town was a stagecoach...until Tweetsie officials heard about Uncle Claude.

The children from my first book play in a stagecoach 
built by the main character of my new book.

How Cool Is That!
Uncle Claude's Stagecoach, 
now parked for safety reasons.

Before I lucked across this picture from another stagecoach craftsman, Tommy Winkler, who so generously donated it to our cause, I asked friends and family and anyone and everyone for Tweetsie pictures I could use in the book. In the end, I'm going with this photo alone, but I do want to share the pictures one mother sent me and agreed I could post on my blog. 

I can't wait for the book to come out so you can see the rest of the story!

Catch of the day,


PS If you have Tweetsie pictures, send them along. Let's share the good times.