Monday, February 04, 2008

Willows Blood Coven

Two more letters printed up and finally headed out tomorrow. One of them wants a full-length synopsis (close to two pages) as well as a query letter. Rewriting what I had took days longer than I thought it would and being sick for four or five days didn't help. The long synopsis was a new form of literary tap dancing and I had a whole new set of steps to learn. So far I'm averaging one to two queries a week. This is pathetic, but I suppose it's better to learn how to do this right.

I'm due to go to the eye doctor in the morning for new glasses. Someone stepped on mine a couple of weeks ago and I've had to rely on Gary and Jeremiah to drive me everywhere ever since. I thought I might be okay to drive until the day I was traveling with Gary to town and spotted a small white dog beside the road intent upon investigating a smell near the pavement. I pointed it out to him and cautioned him to be careful. He looked at me funny for a second and said gently, "Honey, it's a for sale sign".

After the eye doctor I'm headed to the library to research cults and witch craft for my next book, the Willows Blood Coven, what I hope will be a standalone sequel to Troubled_Waters. I've long had a fascination with fringe groups and cults; they've appeared in every book I've written so far. This time I've decided to feature the group that our villain came from in the last book as well as our heroes).

I grew up in Northwest AR in an area that was rife with cults of all kinds. I think the extremely rural area and poorly educated population made for an inviting environment for this sort of thing. Just across the hollow from where I lived was a religious cult who's members largely stayed to themselves. We didn't know much about them, but we could hear their church on Saturday night as their worship services echoed across the hills. Once when I was out hiking in woods, I met a young man who tried talk me into joining them. We talked a couple of times and he tried hard to convince me that I would find a husband in their group (obviously every girl's dream), but I was going to have to give up wearing jeans, wearing make up, and quit riding my horse (obviously not a feminine activity). He was ten years old. Though I was amazed at his grasp of the scriptures for one so young and as much as I appreciated the offer, I just had to turn him down. My mom wasn't amused and cautioned me to stay away from "those people".

We were also lucky enough to grow up near the headquarters of the KKK (I used to ride my horse through the hills around their buildings), the Foundation for Ubiquity (They didn't last very long. Their leaders killed themselves to prove they would arise in three days. They didn't), a couple of end-time cults (those were always a fun source of news--they made a mission of predicting the end of the world every few years and they were always going into hiding--kind of like really nervous rabbits), a satanic group or two(or so it was rumored), and more than one militant group (Young up-and coming Nazis who were too hip for the KKK). You might say the squirrels had a lot of company in them thar hills.

I need to be sure I understand the mindset of people who are drawn to these groups as well as how the leaders maintain their control of the members. I wouldn't describe myself as particularly strong or wise, but the suseptibility of mind it takes to be talked into abandoning one's life and family or partaking of self-harming activities is somewhat foreign to me.

Should be interesting and I think I'm up to doing it justice this time around.

No comments: