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The Ninth Day

Berkeley, California, 1964. While the Free Speech Movement rages, Hope, a shy, stuttering teen scarred by an accidental LSD trip, plans to keep a low profile. Risk compounds reticence when she meets a time-traveler who claims that Hope must find a way to stop a father from killing his newborn son in 11th century Paris.

Companion novel to award-winning Blue Thread.

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“The story is riveting… and, speaking as someone who was arrested in the Free Speech Movement, the Berkeley sections feel true and authentic.”

—Margot Adler, NPR correspondent

“Reading this book… [reveals] constellations rich with story, myth, and magic.”

—Jen Violi, author of Putting Makeup on Dead People

Ruth's Blog: The Interlace Place

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It’s already June (how did that happen?). The construction crew is finishing up their work on the Janey II, which is supposed to have an official opening in “Spring 2015.” They are not going to meet their deadline.

Neither am I.

I am proud to say that I did put together a complete first draft in time for students at Portland State University to review a few months back. As I worked through those excellent comments (thanks, guys), I gave the draft to Viva Scriva to do their critique group thing. More comments. More ideas. That’s when I realized I wanted to add one particular scene, just a few hundred words, really. I followed the writer’s maxim that when things look easy for the protagonist, make them harder. Raise the stakes. Quicken the pace.

In other words, mess up the whole second half of Book Three.

Which is what I am doing now. […]

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Cinco de Mayo. The fifth of May. The historian in me notes that the holiday commemorates the victory of Mexican troops over French invading forces in the 1862 battle of Puebla. The Mexican victory was short-lived, and it would be years before the governance of Mexico was back in the hands of Mexicans. With the French engaged against the Mexicans, however, France was unable to give strategic support to the Confederacy during the Civil War in the United States. Had the French done so, who knows what might have happened.

The leader of the Mexican forces at the battle of Puebla was Ignacio Zaragoza Seguin, but the writer in me is thinking about Ignatius Rivera. While the construction workers are busy finishing up the Janey II, I’m working with Ignatius on Book Three. Who is this guy? Here are the basics.

On this Cinco de Mayo, Ignatius is a 23-year-old U.S. […]

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Brick by brick, etc., etc. Does anyone out there remember the old expression, “Rome wasn’t built in a day”? Here’s an aside for the curious: According to the Web, the expression is a translation of a 12th century remark (in Medieval French) by a cleric in the court of Phillippe of Alsace, Rome ne s’est pas faite en un jour.

So, Rome took a long time. The Janey II is still getting built likely years after an architect first conceived of its existence, and Book Three is…chugging along. We’re not stagnating here, folks, although sometimes the process seems way too slow. I have the luxury of not being bound to deadlines (unlike some in my Viva Scriva coven). This means I can take my time trying to polish every chapter and every scene.

I’m in the feedback stage on Book Three. The Book Editing class at PSU has reviewed the first draft. […]

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