Please welcome F.O.W. (Friend of the Wickeds) author Kaye George to the blog. Into the Sweet Hereafter, the third book in Kaye’s Vintage Sweets series releases March 9th. We’re excited to host her her today.
Take it away, Kaye!
No, I’m not talking about losing files and computer malfunctions. Or even having shoulder or wrist surgery and deadlines looming. (Although those have all happened to me, and probably to you or someone you know.)
I’m talking about disasters, real ones, in the real world, interfering with the action I want to have taking place in my novel, Into the Sweet Hereafter, the third in the series.
Tally Holt, the main character in the Vintage Sweets series has a professional performing team for parents. They’ve been performers since she and her brother Colt were very young and got shoved onto the stage to act and sing, just because kids are always cute. Tally and Colt swore off performing as soon as they could. Well, it coincided with the parents, Bob and Nancy Holt, going international with their act and the kids living with the grandparents. The Holts are the complete package, sing, dance, act, and put on a great show. They have no trouble getting bookings around the world.
The problem I had was that things were happening in the world while I was writing. Bad things.
First, I put them in Hong Kong, a place I’ve always loved to read about and would, I thought, like to visit someday. Then things happened. China had been taking back ownership of the colony after allowing them democratic self-government since the lease to Great Britain in 1898. That lease ended in 1997. In those 100 years, Hong Kong established itself as a bustling service-based economy. It has suffered since then, partly from severe flu epidemics, but also from the lessening of their democratic form of government. At first, while I was writing, the college students were protesting recent crackdowns in the airport by standing silently, covered with sticky notes displaying their grievances. I thought it was the cutest protest ever. Then the flights stopped, so I decided to strand the Holts there for a bit. Quickly, however, things escalated and there was real violence. Not cute at all. So I pulled them out of there and decided they should go to Rome instead. That would be safer, right?
So I sent them to Gibraltar, another place I would love to visit. That should be safe, right? Yikes! After they performed, Thomas Cook Travel Agency has a crisis and all European flights were messed up and grounded. They were stranded there!
They finally got a flight to Rome to perform in the Circus Maximus. So naturally, Rome, and many other places in Italy, had historic flooding right then. Even in their venue, the ancient Circus Maximus. They couldn’t perform there at all!
They got to Australia well before the fires there, at least.
And this is a minor subplot!
I hope I made it work and that you’ll enjoy reading about their escapades. Their cozy escapades, right?
Readers: There have certainly been a lot of natural disasters recently and I’m not even counting the pandemic. Do you want the fiction you read to be realistic enough to take those things into account? Or would you rather the fictional worlds ignore the real one and carry on?
GIVEAWAY: If you’d like to win a copy of a book in this series, please leave a comment and I’ll pick one Monday night, the 22nd. Note: If you would like this latest book, I’ll send it when it comes out in March. I can send you a copy of the first or the second one ( Revenge is Sweet and Deadly Sweet Tooth) right away.
Kaye George is a national-bestselling, multiple-award-winning author of pre-history, traditional, and cozy mysteries (her latest is the Vintage Sweets series from Lyrical Press). Her short stories have appeared online, in anthologies, magazines, her own collection, her own anthology, Day of the Dark. She is a member of Sisters in Crime, Smoking Guns chapter (Knoxville), Guppies chapter, Authors Guild of TN, Knoxville Writers Group, and Austin Mystery Writers. She lives and works in Knoxville, TN.