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Saturday, July 25, 2015


Beyond the Blue Mountains is my newest release from PBRJV-VTP. This novel is set in Texas in 1919--the end of WWI, then called The Great War. For various reasons, I struggled more than two years with this story.

First, I had no idea where it was going. If you're an author, you know the feeling. Some of my stories seemed to write themselves, but not this one. The main characters were perfect, so no changes there. The very beginning was good, but where would the story go after that? Little by little, I made some progress, but would soon put it aside, thinking I would never finish it.

One day, a few months ago, I had an "Ah-Hah!" moment. The reason I couldn't finish this story flashed before my eyes.

Most stories...just end. Don't they? If I write a romance, the couple get together, and we hope they'll live happily ever after, and we move on.
But life is hard under the best of circumstances. People move from one decade to another in real life and cope with whatever changes occur in the society.

This is where I hit the snag.

I worried about Guy and Teresa, because they seemed so real to me. They marry in 1919, but what happens to them during the Roaring Twenties? What befalls them when the stock market crashes in 1929 and the Thirties become the Great Depression?

In other words, I needed to have them settled in a place where I imagined they could cope with the Great Depression. Probably, the couple would prosper during the Twenties, because the war had ended and the government and the population were ready to do business with money that had previously gone to the war effort.

Please don't think I'm a bit wacky. I've gone through this with other stories, but not as much. During the Nineteenth Century, life didn't change a great deal in the West during pioneer days, so I could assume my characters would cope just fine. In fact, citizens in rural Texas the latter part of the Nineteenth Century and the early decades of the Twentieth lived much as their ancestors had. Modernization came slowly to the country towns and villages.

During the Twentieth Century or beyond, I have first-hand knowledge of the societal changes, and we all survived fairly well.

So, how did I end my story? Of course, you'll have to read the book to find out. I'll tell you the truth--even I didn't know until close to The End.
Guymon Reynolds arrives home to Grove's Point, Texas, in February 1919, the end of WWI. Knowing he's lost his parents and two young brothers to the Spanish flu, he's anxious to see his grandpa at the family farm. But nothing is right upon his arrival. He faces more death and destruction that resembles the battlefields where he fought in France.

Young widow Teresa Logan lives near the depot. She, too, grieves for her husband who died from the flu. Alone on a farm with two baby girls, she struggles with loneliness, back-breaking work, and sometimes, fear. But Teresa is strong and determines to care for her family and her farm alone.

Guy and Teresa meet and they easily bond, sharing grief and sorrow.

Both dream of a better life in Grove's Point, or perhaps a new beginning beyond the Blue Mountains.

***Read the First Chapter on the book page at Amazon.

***eBook ($3.99) and Print ($11.49) available at Amazon:


***And Smashwords:


 Celia Yeary-Romance...and a little bit 'o Texas


  1. I certainly do know the feeling when you think you've got a story locked down--but you don't. I'm glad you found the problem and rededicated yourself to the story because I love your work. I'd hate to think one of them was lying unfinished in the darkness of a drawer.
    My favorite time period is 1900-1950. It just seems to me to be the most exciting time is history with rapid changes on every front. I have to get Beyond the Blue Mountains! I must find out how you ended it--or whatever it is you did there. I'm so behind on my reading it's pitiful.
    All the very best to you, Celia. You're a wonderful writer. I've loved every story I've read of yours.

  2. Hi, Sarah! Wow, thanks. You know, I love the same period as you mention--1900-1950. I do love the Old West and those stories, and those have a big following. But how about the 40's and 50's? Yes, they are very appealing, and I might just try another one. I'd like to see how this one does, but in reality? If I had a story in my head set in the 40s, I'd go ahead and write it, and hope a publisher would like it. Actually, I began a story set in the 40s, but deleted it. Still, I remember the basic plot...oh, now I'm excited about a new story in a new decade!
    You keep writing, too. Your Wilding series is so appealing.

  3. If I continue my Appalachia saga set in prohibition times, I will face the same "How well did my characters handle the great depression?" I do have one advantage, in that my own grandparents told me they didn't notice it that much, because they were already dirt poor.

    1. Gerald--I've heard this, too. Plus, in research, I read accounts of the poor still living as they had been and didn't notice. Now, there's a sad side to that, of course, but a good side, too. They had a big of land to grow food and have a few cows and chickens. Of course, this didn't work so well in the Dust Bowl regions of the country. They struggled to not starve to death. My husband was a Depression Baby and although his family with 12 kids had a tough time, he grew up happy and totally oblivious to the hardships his parents faced daily. But it did set him on a path of saving things and money--a frugal person when he doesn't have to be. It's a mindset, I think, of Depression people.
      The prohibition times in Appalachia? You have chose an intriguing era and times. I wish you all the luck on your continuing series.

  4. I find it interesting how the story gods work. Sometimes they give us writers a glimmer of a tale, sometimes an entire scene, sometimes just a look or a kiss or a field. Trust me, I've had plenty of moments of stark terror as I'm writing saying to myself "no way is this going to work," but somehow the ideas align in a pleasing array and a story is hatched. Sounds like that's what happened with beyond the Blue Mountains. Wishing you luck with sales with this one! I'm sure it will read just as wonderfully as your other stories I've read.


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