Once upon a plaidWhen I took a writing class in college, my prof said to me, “Your writing is lovely, dear. The problem is theme. You don’t seem to have one.”

Well, Dr. Barclay would be proud of my upcoming release, Once Upon a Plaid. It was founded on a theme.

I decided to tackle the issue of childlessness after my sister served as a gestational surrogate for a couple who could not conceive. (If you follow me on Facebook, you rode the roller coaster with us through the final difficult days of her high risk pregnancy and difficult birth.) Infertility is a difficult enough issue in the twenty-first century, when we have access to in vitro fertilization technology and a host of other options. It was devastating in the sixteenth century, when there was no help for childless couples at all. But no matter the time period, the emotional pain is the same and my heart goes out to all who grapple with infertility.

I’m sure some readers will wonder why William and Katherine didn’t simply adopt a child. Unfortunately, there was no such thing then. Fostering was common, and noble houses would accept wards, but there was no law governing legal adoption in the United Kingdom (including Scotland) until 1926. Bloodlines were paramount to the laws of inheritance, so even if adoption were legal, adopted children still wouldn’t be able to inherit.

Hope you’ll look for Once Upon a Plaid when it comes out next week on October 7th! You can read the first 3 chapters here or pre-order it today, if you like.

Emmaand Lucas

Oh! Back to the “rest of the story….”

After a challenging surrogate pregnancy that ended in a difficult delivery, my sister gave birth to healthy twins, a boy and a girl. And then she put these precious gifts into the arms of a grateful couple.

The twins’ parents have been terrific about sending pictures and keeping in touch with my sister. This darling photo is from their first Christmas.

Is my sister heroine material or what?