History & Research Travel Writing

Going on an adventure

By on September 9, 2014

I think I’m going to be starting every single one of these posts with “Well it’s been a while…” Of course summers as a public librarian are always super busy, so let’s just sum up by saying I’m very happy it’s September, for many reasons.

Biggest of those is that I’m on vacation!

Well, it’s still “work.” I’m on a road-trip to do research for the rest of the books in my YA historical fiction series, Firebrand. Still waiting on an agent for the first, but it’s time to look ahead to the next book. And I can’t very well start writing about the Civil War itself without seeing a few battlefields, firsthand.

I flew into Pittsburgh yesterday to start, I have family here I hadn’t seen for almost fourteen years! I spent the evening with most of them, and even drove by the house my great-grandmother lived in before she died. We spent many summers there as kids–probably some of the best memories of my childhood are from that old house. The new owners have changed quite a bit, but I think it looks beautiful!

Now I’m waiting for the Carnegie Library open so I can do a bit of family research while I’m in the area. Ancestry.com has taken us far, but it’s time to do a little leg-work for some of the more elusive branches of the tree. I only wish I had longer to spend in the Pittsburgh area, to see family, to do a little more digging. See some of the places my ancestors lived, and worked, up here.

But another time, because I have to be on the road to Gettysburg this afternoon. I’m squeezing in about five battlefields this week:

  • Gettysburg
  • Antietam
  • Fredericksburg
  • Chancellorsville
  • Wilderness

Thankfully those last three are all in the same national park. Then I’ll be ending the trip by driving to Richmond and flying home, hopefully with many pictures and a ton of research for these next three books!

I’ll try to post daily updates here, depending on the reliability of the internet, but there will definitely be updates on Twitter.

Here’s hoping for good weather!




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