Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Lynn Austin | The Upstairs Downstairs Syndrome
Author Guest / June 3, 2020

Inside the stately manor house on the TV series Downton Abbey, two different worlds exist. Life upstairs is elegant and refined. The gentry is considered superior to the working class and worthy of deference and respect because of the “blue blood” in their veins. They wear fabulous clothing that they can’t seem to put on by themselves, enjoy fine dining every evening, and have plenty of leisure time. Downstairs, servants wearing identical uniforms day after day bump elbows with each other as they work from dawn until long after dark to keep the household running in good order. The family upstairs enjoys the freedom to pursue new pastimes and careers while their downstairs servants seem destined to remain among the servant class. The divide between the classes is much wider than the door that separates them. That’s why, when the chauffeur and the upstairs daughter dare to fall in love, both servants and gentry at Downton Abbey are equally horrified. My latest novel, If I Were You, takes place in a similar setting—in a grand manor house called Wellingford Hall. Audrey Clarkson lives a life of wealth and privilege upstairs. Eve Dawson and her mother work downstairs as household servants….

Cindy K. Sproles | Author-Reader Match: What Momma Left Behind
Author Guest / June 3, 2020

Instead of trying to find your perfect match in a dating app, we bring you the “Author-ReaderMatch” where we introduce you to authors as a reader you may fall in love with. It’s our great pleasure to present Cindy K. Sproles! Writes: Cindy writes Appalachian Historical (1800s era). Her stories are gritty, emotional, and full of action. What Momma Left Behind, tackles the difficult life of the orphaned children in the deep Smoky Mountains when “the fever” seemed to be taking more adults and leaving orphaned children by the droves to forge the mountains to survive. About: Author is a mountain gal who seeks friends who appreciate the sweet smell of fresh mountain air after a spring rain, and the stamina to hike to the summit. Raised in the mountains of East Tennessee, Cindy loves her mountain heritage and her desire is to keep the stories of the Appalachians in the forefront so they are not forgotten.  She wants readers to relate to the hardships but see the determination and faithfulness to others found in people “back in the hollers.” What I’m looking for in my ideal reader match: *Readers must like fast hitting action. *Must be willing to plow through the hardship to see the depth of those who…

Beth White | Birthplace of the King
Author Guest / June 3, 2020

Writing is a creative enterprise for sure, but there’s also an element of pragmatism involved. While considering the setting for a new book series three or four years ago, I wanted to find a place that had some familiarity for me (theoretically cutting down on research time), but at the same time might spark curiosity in my audience. What could be more fun than reading about the beginnings of a little Southern town that spawned one of the greatest rock ’n roll legends of all time? It just so happened that Tupelo, Mississippi, the birthplace of Elvis Presley, was incorporated in 1870—precisely in the middle of the Reconstruction Era, the tumultuous setting I’d chosen for the Daughtry House series. Giving myself leeway to create whatever I needed to for the story (for example, there were no real plantations left in the area by the end of the Civil War; Ithaca/Daughtry House is based on Waverley Plantation, which is actually in nearby West Point, Mississippi), I tried as much as possible to ground the little town of Tupelo in life as it would have been back then. Boarding houses, saloons, mercantiles, and other businesses set in a grid not too far…