Arriving: 1909-1919 recently turned eighteen months old, and is starting to take on a life of its own. Like a toddler learning to walk, it is striving for independence and identity while embarking upon a journey to explore the world. In its infancy, Arriving has travelled from coast to coast in Canada, a host of the states of our neighbouring country, Costa Rica, Portugal, and England.
Along the way, my first book of the Understanding Ursula trilogy has acquired avid supporters and fans, many of whom have shared where the novel is taking them, and what is happening when they turn the pages. Memories from their past suddenly become vivid, and they are carried back to their childhood and youth.
During a recent delightful telephone conversation with Rosemary from Port Elgin, Ontario, she shared her recollections of the ‘Silent Critics’ in the small town where she had been raised, and how, now whenever she and her husband Ashley are subjected to the local gossip, they lay claim to this notorious group of rumour mongers. From the moment Paulette began to read the first page of Arriving, she was transported back to her grandparents’ farm in Norway, and soon was overcome with longing for their love, and for the simplicity of their lives.
Still, the most poignant experience might be what is happening for a woman who suffers from severe dementia at Whispering Waters Manor in Stony Plain. Kim, the Activity Coordinator made the decision to read Arriving aloud every Friday morning to the residents; before long it became apparent from week to week that this elderly lady could recall the names of all the characters in the novel, even though she is unable to remember those of her fellow occupants, or any of the staff.
I have always believed that I am ‘a part of all that I have met,’ and that my past, along with my memories help to define who I am as a person. Before I began to write my trilogy I returned to the site of my birth, and during a trip to the family cemetery on this farm, I experienced an eerie encounter. Standing in front of the decaying, broken headstones of my Great-Grandparents, I was suddenly filled with a sensation of pervading warmth and approval, a profound affirmation that I was to proceed with my story.
The importance of telling our stories extends well beyond the educational benefits to the equally significant social aspects of safeguarding our history and legacy for future generations. Whereas the milestones of history preserve crucial knowledge, the chronicle of ordinary people who live through major historical events perpetuate the experienced and felt insights, feelings, learnings, actions, and behaviours.
Thank you, Bill and Ann, Historians from Moose Jaw for sharing Arriving: 1909 -1919, and Thriving: 1920-1939 with your many grandchildren to promote my quest for immortalizing real, ordinary Canadians.
Hello Corinne I met you at chapters in Regina she you were here signing your books, I bought both of your books and I have to say I enjoyed both of them greatly, couldn’t put them down . Can’t wait to get my hands on the next one. took me back to my childhood and a lot of memories of the simple things in life.
Hi Anna, I’m delighted that you enjoyed Arriving:1909-1919, and Thriving: 1920-1939; thanks so much for your gracious and encouraging words. I’m returning to Chapters – Regina, I think on Wednesday, October 15/13. Please confirm this date by googling my website email@example.com and check my appearances on Home. I’d love to sign and personalize your copy of Choosing: 1940-1989.
See you then,
We met at the River Cree Sale and I picked up Arriving and Thriving.
I have just started reading and so far so good.I was wondering if these books are based on your family. I understand they are historical fiction but they sound like they are based on real people and I was wondering if they are your people.
Hi David, I do remember meeting you; at the time I wanted to comment that I quite liked your hat, and didn’t, thus I shall now. I believe every honest author will acknowledge that she or he writes about what they know. I do not think for a minute that I could sit at my computer for nine years writing an 800 page trilogy, and not draw on my conscious, subconscious, and even unconscious levels of awareness. I have consistently maintained that my trilogy was in my heart, and mind, and soul waiting to be written, and my muse surprised me, perhaps as much as many of my readers with some of my characters and their actions.
When is the third edition coming out. I,ve enjoyed both books so far.
Hi Marilyn, I’m so glad that you have enjoyed Arriving: 1909-1919, and Thriving: 1920-1939. The third book of my trilogy Choosing:1940 -1989 will be launched at the St. Albert Public Library on Sunday, September 29/13 at 2 P.M. I’m uncertain where you live, but shortly after my launch, I’m going on a book tour; for dates and places, please google my website firstname.lastname@example.org and check Home.
Thanks so much,
Have thoroughly enjoyed your books Corinne. Waiting for the third one. Great work!!
How nice to hear from you. I hope that you have completely recovered from your bout with cancer, and are once again enjoying your customary quality of life.
I wasn’t aware that you were reading Arriving: 1909-1919, and Thriving: 1920-1939; thanks for your favourable feedback.
I’m returning to McNally Robinson Booksellers on Grant in Winnipeg on Saturday, October 19/13 for a signing of Choosing: 1940 -1989. Since I wonder if Gwen loaned you her copies, I would be delighted to sign and personalize your own complete set of my Understanding Ursula trilogy.
All the best,