“Creating a Setting”
Gracen, thanks so much for allowing me to visit your blog. I hope we can have some fun today. This past summer, my first attempt at writing short romance fiction, Those Who Wait, found a home with Decadent Publishing and is available at http://www.decadentpublishing.com/.
I had the privilege to be one of the authors who created the original outline for Summerville mentioned below which morphed into the Class of 85 series. My own contribution to the series, The List, will be released in early 2011. It has been great fun and a real learning experience. For those who are interested in learning more about the Class of 85 series—or might like to submit—they can visit http://www.thewildrosepress.com/.
Creating a Setting
Several years ago, four authors came together to create an anthology for submission to The Wild Rose Press. The stories were based on five friends from high school who return to their hometown twenty-five years later when one of the five dies suddenly, leaving the surviving four a legacy.
One of the first tasks involved 'inventing' the setting of Summerville, a fictional town in Upstate New York which sits on the shore of Lake Ontario. One of the authors 'discovered' a unique neighborhood within the city of Rochester, then took photographs and brought them to the other three authors. With that, Summerville came to life—at least on paper. Sadly, the anthology never came to fruition but Summerville lives on in The Class of '85, a reunion series for the Last Rose of Summer line at The Wild Rose Press.
The formal invitation to the reunion is the 'unifying factor' for the series. With the groundwork for the series already laid, submitting authors tweaked and expanded the town, its inhabitants, and created a number of reunion events. The first 'alum' to make the reunion, “Getting It Right”, was released in August 2010. By the end of 2010, eleven stories will have been released, with more scheduled to come out in 2011.
Here's what we have so far:
Summerville, a large town of 25,000, sits on a bluff over-looking Lake Ontario, Queen of the Great Lakes. Water sports are a popular outdoor activity. The area is a busy assignment for the immigration authorities as well as the Coast Guard, Summerville PD and Bison County Sheriff Department, monitoring illegal entry into the country from Canada and alcohol related marine incidents, such as drinking and boating.
There is a large migrant population in this region, working the family-owned farming operations. It could be a hotbed for activists.
Higher education: Summerville College, inaccurately termed “the U” by locals, large co-ed liberal arts institution, known for its NCAA division I lacrosse champs.
Health Care: The town has a full service hospital which is code red most nights [the ER is full and can only accept major chest or head trauma.] It's in desperate need of health care facilities and urgent care centers to reduce the bottleneck in the ER and residents alternatives for non-emergency care.
Professional Sports: The Hornets are a triple A baseball team. Winners in the 80's and early 90's, the team has gone down the toilet in recent years, mainly due to ownership who doesn't know its bats from their behinds. Whatever the cause, they need a fire lit under their butts. The Red Barons, part of the Buffalo Sabres NHL hockey system.
Law Enforcement/Legal System: The former school bully is now the Chief of Police. One of his former victims is the County Sheriff. Another former bad boy now advocates for the “less than”, victims of school bullies and non-responsive school systems. Several of the stories feature past 'victims' who return to claim their place in the sun and wreak havoc on those who took advantage of them.
1985 Alumni include:
Two prime time network news anchors/reporters
A retired rock star
A two-time Pulitzer Prize winner known for exposing human rights abuses, genocide and ethnic cleansing around the world.
A world famous fashion photographer
A modeling agent who features large size and 'mature' models, male and female
A mega-millionaire computer geek, ala Bill Gates
An award winning author/illustrator of children's books.
A Hollywood actor on the caliber of Brad Pitt, known for his work in action films.
A philanthropist [now deceased] whose legacy continues to benefit the community.
It is clear when imaginative people come together, any number of wonderful things can happen. Submissions to the Class of 85 remain open until December 31, 2010.
Veronica Lynch Bio:
Over the years I've had the honor to work at a number of occupations: nurse, malpractice insurance investigator, forensic nurse examiner, victim advocate, wife and mother.
Even if I sometimes wish they'd remain in the closet, the years I spent advocating for victims of sexual violence contribute significantly to the voice of my writing. You can't spend twelve years haunting police stations, Emergency Rooms, and criminal courts and not come away with a feel for rampant misogyny, overwhelming apathy, and overt bigotry.
I retired my speculum and stethoscope a few years ago but continue to advocate, quietly, for marginalized populations through Amnesty International and Doctors Without Borders.
My blog: http://www.vlynchauthor.blogspot.com/