England--a country of thatched cottages, medieval castles echoing the past glory of knights in shining armor, kings and queens, lords and ladies . As you may suspect, I am a romantic who is enthralled with the pomp and pageantry of yesteryear. Although I realized that life no longer existed, I longed to see the remnants of the place and time I had envisioned. Not just as a "walk-through" tourist; I wanted to live there. Imagine my elation when my husband's job enabled me to do so.
Did the experience live up to my expectations? In some ways, yes; in others, no. Was I inspired to write a novel while there? Regretfully, I was not. Since I have never kept a journal nor made notes (except in my head) to use in future stories, I realized I would not be able to record my life in Hull by that means. So I chose the only realistic mode of retention; I used my letters home to family and friends to describe our lives in Hull and kept copies. Now, when enough time has passed that I feel more objective about sharing my thoughts with casual acquaintances and strangers, I'm ready to publish my Letters from Hull. (Watch for the announcement of its release soon.)
The book has a number of pictures taken in Hull (including both interior and exterior of our flat) and on some of our adventures around the country. It was difficult to choose from the many we had available and I finally selected the ones most important to me and/or my husband. I won't spoil viewing them in context with the story by offering a preview of them in this post.
These letters are not a travelogue. I have not attempted to describe the beauty and majesty of every castle, abbey, and great hall visited. Nor have I sought to praise the people who were always accepting, gracious, and helpful. First referred to in my letters as "Impressions of England" these are my honest reactions to my surroundings. They describe my efforts to adjust to a new culture, speak the English language, and learn as much about the country of my ancestors as time and opportunity would allow. Readers have found them humorous and enlightening, but those readers have known me. As the release date nears, I obsess about the reactions of others. I did not live in a vacuum and family and friends on both sides of the pond have walk-on roles in this narration. Will they be pleased? Or will they stop sending me Christmas greetings? I hope this book will be taken in the way it was intended--a view of Hull from one who came from the other side and has since returned to tell about it.
P.S. I did eventually write two historical novels inspired by my stay in England. They can be found on Amazon. Here are the links:
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