During the long period when I was working on my graduate studies and then Queen of the Hurricanes I was asked from time-to-time if I had any intention of writing a book for youth or something that was less scholarly in nature. My usual response to that question was something to the effect that I was finding the current project rather overwhelming and before starting a second book I wanted to finish the first!
When I finished Queen of the Hurricanes I jokingly promised my husband that I would wait at least three weeks before starting another book. I had no idea that before that time period had even passed that someone would already suggest a very interesting collaborative project! That project has yet to materialize, but the question about a less scholarly book on Elsie resurfaced. During a presentation to the Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) group of Ottawa, one of the questions was will there be a youth book? This time I paused, and then noted that it would be a good idea - as suddenly dialogue was coming to mind!
Shortly after that presentation I wrote down what had come to mind and I found it hard to stop writing - that has happened repeatedly as of late and the story is really coming to life. It is a completely new world, despite the fact it is essentially the same story because it is historical fiction. The limits placed on a historian regarding exact evidence are loosened and I am free to imagine what Elsie may have been thinking in certain instances - who she spoke to - what their responses were.
It started out as a youth book - but it might end up being a regular novel - it is too early to tell at the moment. In the meantime I am enjoying the challenge of changing from a thematic biographical study to a largely chronological story.
Where it is headed for sure is unclear at this moment, but I do know that I am truly enjoying the journey and learning a lot along the way!