Friday, March 5, 2010

Women's History Month

by Cate Masters


March is Women’s History Month, and this year’s theme is “Writing Women Back Into History.”

Perfect timing, as I just finished up my second historical novel about two little-known subjects. The first, Angels Sinners and Madmen, reveals the history of the wreckers in 1856 Key West, Florida, and follows the journey of Livvie Collins through her shipwreck and island experience. During a visit to Key West, I found the wreckers fascinating. I’d never heard of them before, and spent two days in the library researching them, visiting the few museums and gathering up as much information as I could. Freya’s Bower will release the novel this spring.

The second novel, Follow the Stars Home, focuses on the tragic history of the Carlisle Indian Industrial School from its founding year, 1879. Using news accounts and researching the Lakota people, I placed two fictional characters in actual events that occurred there. I submitted the manuscript this week to a publisher.

If you’d like to take up the challenge to write about a woman in history, begin by Googling Women’s History Month to find many fascinating links, such as the Guide to Worldwide Goddesses. Reading through these descriptions revs my imagination into high gear.

Likewise the list of inventions presented on the Female Ingenuity page. I’d never have guessed a woman invented a circular saw, or the programming language COBOL, or the elevated railway, or the rotary engine!
The National Women’s Hall of Fame is also a great place to find inspiring stories of incredible women, from actresses to athletes, inventors to judges. I found it hard to believe there are currently only 236 women on the list. But there’s a page to nominate more, so I may have to do that! I encourage you to do the same. And to take up the challenge to Write Women Back Into History too.
Cate Masters writes fantasy/dark fantasy, historical, contemporary and speculative fiction, described by reviewers as “so compelling, I did not want to put it down,” “such romantic tales that really touch your soul,” “filled with action scenes which made it a riveting story,” and “the author weaves a great tale with a creative way of using words that makes the story refreshing to read.” Visit Cate online at www.catemasters.com, www.catemasters.blogspot.com or follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

17 comments:

  1. Hello, Cate & Rebecca.

    What a fab, informative post! I'm glad I stopped by.

    Monique
    Author of Divorce Etiquette, Let's Pretend, and More Than a Playboy

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  2. Thanks so much for your kind words, Monique! Glad you enjoyed it. And glad you stopped by!

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  3. First, congrats on your new book! As to womens history month, wow, you knew? Very interesting post.

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  4. Congrats on your upcoming release, Cate!

    And this is a fascinating subject. I based the heroine in my latest romance novel on the real-life women who served in the Union and Confederate armies during the Civil War, disguised as men, because women weren't allowed to serve as soldiers. The real-life stories of these women, blocked out of history for so long, were fascinating!

    I'll have to check out that site you've listed too!

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  5. Thanks Beth. No, not ahead of time, I didn't know. More like serendipity. :)

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  6. Thanks Susan! I love your story premises. It's great you're giving these heroines their long overdue due!

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  7. I love historical novels. I read non-fiction for ways to authenticate my characterizations as well as setting. My heroine and hero, like yours in your second example, are fictional, but their actions, dress, speech, and living conditions are well researched. Your books sound as if they would be a pleasure to read. Continued good luck.

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  8. Hi Cate,
    Very interesting blog. Unfortunately, in the male dominated world of the past, women didn't get the accolades they so richly deserved.

    Cheers

    Margaret

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  9. Cate, what a great post you wrote. I learned a lot.

    :)Becky

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  10. Sad but true, Margaret. Luckily, wonderful writers such as you are here to bring their stories to light!

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  11. Thanks so much, Becky! And thanks again for having me here.

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  12. Thanks for letting us know aboout Women's History Month.

    Jana

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  13. Becky, you're such a positive person, I've given your blog a Sunshine Award! Come to my blog to see...

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  14. I need to do a post about that, too. The month is almost over!

    Thanks for reminding us of our many contributions to society and best of luck with your books!

    Liana Laverentz
    www.lianalaverentz.com

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