Almost one year ago, I wrote a book. That sounds rather impressive and perhaps too grandiose, but I will admit that I am very proud of my efforts. River Farm is a blend of women’s fiction and romance in an historical setting and written with a Christian worldview. It tells the story of a young indentured servant in Colonial Virginia and follows the progression of her unexpected romance with the wealthy landowner and doctor who hires her. It is my dream to see this story in print and accordingly, I have been busy sending query letters to carefully selected literary agents. I am learning so much through this process and feel very lucky to be able to keep my faith as I travel this rocky road of hope and possibility, rejection and failure. But that isn’t what this post is about and the story of my journey toward publication is for another time. Instead, here is a brief description. Welcome to River Farm!
Idealistic, independent, and utterly alone, seventeen-year-old Catherine Abbott arrives in the Virginia colony on a beautiful day in the spring of 1774. Recently orphaned and reeling from a suitor’s shocking betrayal she is still full of hope and determined to build a new life for herself. Unfortunately, she attracts the attention of Silas Grayson, a local ruffian with a frightening reputation. Dr. James Craig notices Catherine’s predicament and hires her before Grayson can complete the transaction. He takes her to live at River Farm, his home on the Potomac. Although James’s initial intention is to protect Catherine, the two share an unmistakable attraction and soon grow to care for each other. The story progresses with the many memorable experiences, some good and some bad, that the two share as their feelings deepen. There are visits to Mount Vernon, where Catherine meets James’s oldest and closest friend, George Washington; Catherine’s foray into midwifery as James’s assistant; and a spirited celebration of All Hallow’s Eve complete with country dancing and a corn husking, among others. There is also danger, particularly in the return of Silas Grayson, and more than one tragic occurrence with far-reaching consequences.
The Revolutionary War begins and the two find themselves facing a difficult period of separation when James joins the Continental Army as a surgeon. From New York to the Delaware River to Valley Forge, James discharges his duty even as he comes to realize that he loves Catherine. When he returns home the couple’s happiness seems assured but James is full of sadness and dark moods from the suffering and death he witnessed on the battlefield. He is unable to make a commitment and Catherine, who is ready to marry and start a family, decides that she can no longer wait for him. There is some question as to whether the story can possibly have a happy ending and it is my hope that readers will come to care about these characters and be invested in the outcome.
Please follow my blog, and visit often, as I will be sharing more details about my novel in future posts. And tell me, what do you think? Does the story sound interesting to you? Would you read about life and love at River Farm?