Monday, 2 November 2015

Salem's Daughters from Stephen Tremp ...



Today please welcome Stephen, who has jumped the pond and left us a story about his new book ... so without further ado I open the pages to Salem's Daughters ...

Stephen Tremp's Breakthrough Blog header photo
Hi everyone, my name is Stephen Tremp and thanks for stopping by and saying hello. Anyone who visits Hilary’s blog knows one of her specialties is the setting of history, culture, European royalty, war and food among other topics.





So what better international hostess to ask to host me on my Salem’s Daughter’s Blog Tour, and my theme about setting, than Hilary Melton-Butcher. 





Michigan - showing its placement
bounded by four of the Great Lakes
I grew up in southern Michigan, originally part of the Northwest Territory and admitted to the Union in 1805 as the 26th state of the United States of America.



Fast forward to today. I did not have the rich European history that includes Roman expansion, countless European wars the decided gazillions of lives and western world events, Queen Elizabeth the longest current reigning monarch, Princess Diana, and the British Rock and Roll Invasion of the Beatles, Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin and countless other bands and singers that influenced the United States of America.


Whew, that’s a lot, and I barely scratched the surface.
But I do come from humble beginnings, and I used this unique setting to my advantage to write Salem’s Daughters. 


The Breezeway - rural rides through
Michigan
One of the inspirations for Salem’s Daughters came a few years ago when my parents drove me through the country roads of southern Michigan and expounded on their youth and environment in great detail.


English countryside
I could “see” the setting as they told me of their upbringing as young children during World War II and then the 1950s. I took a ton of notes and pictures. This makes Salem’s Daughters extra special and was a lot of fun to write.


Here’s a snippet from Salem’s Daughters on the setting:

Together, they admired and appreciated the farm houses and barns. There were new fixtures mixed with the old. 

Names of the families who owned the properties, painted on the roofs of barns, shouted with pride to those driving by.


“I know what you’re thinking. Bob, it’s not like we’d be isolated. These are small farms, maybe a hundred acres or less. They’ve probably been in their family for generations. Look, I can see more houses in front and at the back of us. It’s not like there aren’t other people around. 


And there are towns close by; we just left Battle Creek. Marshall is about fifteen minutes forward. I bet we could find a place for a lot less money than what our house cost. What do you think?”


Bob squirmed in his seat. “Mmm, I don’t know. What if the local kinfolk kidnap and sacrifice us to their corn gods?”


And a little snarky humor doesn’t hurt.

Question: Do you use real places and establishments in your books, or do you make them up?

Short Blurb: A four hundred year old evil is unleashed when the daughters of those killed during the Salem Witch Trials find a new generation of people to murder at a popular modern-day bed and breakfast.

Stephen Tremp writes Speculative Fiction and embraces science and the supernatural to help explain the universe, our place in it, and write one of a kind thrillers. 

You can read a full synopsis and download Salem’s Daughters, for $2.99, from Amazon - go here


Stephen Tremp posts weekly on his blog at his website - Stephen Tremp's Breakthrough Blogs


Next Stop: Wednesday November 4th at Lynda R.Young’s blog.

Good luck Stephen with Salem's Daughters - it sounds a very interesting read ... and I enjoyed knowing your parents didn't leave England too long ago.


Hilary Melton-Butcher
Positive Letters and Inspirational Stories

49 comments:

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Stephen - welcome to the blog - and I'm glad to learn your parents didn't leave the 'old world' too long ago .. and you can weave the history together in relation to Salem's Daughters. There's lots going on in your story line - and it'll be a good read ... cheers and enjoy the book everyone - Hilary

Elephant's Child said...

Congratulations Stephen.
I can see that I am going to have to weaken. Again.

Weekend-Windup said...

Welcome Stephen. Nice to read many things about Salem Daughter. Keep going!

Out on the prairie said...

This sounds like a fun read. Hope it all goes well.

Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

Congratulations to you, Stephen!

Somehow I didn't know you grew up in Michigan. A lot warmer where you are now, right? :)

I usually prefer writing made-up settings, but I have written (very carefully) real settings, too.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Stephen, that was wise of you to take notes concerning the stories your parents told you.

Over half of the places in my stories are real. It was fun looking them up, although many were from memory.

Jo said...

I wasn't wise enough to take notes of my parents' stories. Today I so wish I had. Lots of success with your book.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ EC - yes looks like a few of us will be checking out Amazon.

@ Jeno - good to meet you. Thanks for coming by and wishing Stephen well with Salem's Daughters

@ Steve - I'm sure it'll be a good read and will go well.

@ Elizabeth - Stephen is certainly spreading the word. I knew he came from Michigan, but hadn't realised his parents were relatively recent immigrants to the States.

I think I'd prefer made up settings while weaving some truth in where appropriate ... I like your phrase 'very carefully'!! for your real life settings.

@ Diane - wasn't it wise to take notes ... I'm only picking up pieces now about the early part of the 20th century. I think we must all use our memory when we write stories or posts down ...

@ Jo - I know .. I wished I had more information on certain aspects of my parent's lives ..

Cheers and thanks for visiting Stephen here - Hilary

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

We have a lot of history here if you look for it.
I use real places. What, you don't believe the planet of Cassa is real?

Bish Denham said...

History in the US goes back before the first Europeans, it just wasn't written down. Some of the Native American pueblos were built over a 1000 years ago. And the Spaniards were here before the English... the earliest missions go back to the early 1500s and St. Augustine, FL is the oldest city in the US... founded by Ponce de Leon in 1513.

Mary Montague Sikes said...

Love those barns and silos of Wisconsin and Michigan. Our history in Virginia connects closely to the British--first English colony at Jamestown (1607) just a few miles away from our home. My writing studio overlooks the woods where Pocahontas once lived.

Thank you, Hilary, for having Stephen as your guest. And a big thank you for visiting my new art blog! http://theartfulwaysikes.blogspot.com

Southpaw HR Sinclair said...

Best of luck, Stephen! I've seen some of those barns. I used real and realish settings.

Stephen Tremp said...

Thanks Hilary for hosting me today. It's always a pleasure to have you as one of my stops on my blog tour.

Cheers everyone!

Rhodesia said...

Well done Stephen, I am off to Amazon right now. Diane

Elsie Amata said...

Best of luck, Stephen!

I laughed when you said, "small" - 100 acres…oh, is that all? hehehe

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

I think it's a part of the country where few books are set so it adds some uniqueness to the setting. Cool that your tour went international.

Suzanne Furness said...

I mostly make names up (comes from writing a lot of fantasy I guess!) however I have used some real Cornish places in one of my stories. That must have been a fascinating trip with your parents Stephen.

mail4rosey said...

Loving the post and wishing Stephen the best with the new book realease!

Karen Lange said...

It's fun to see Stephen here. That was a long trip for him, wasn't it? :) Hilary, thanks for hosting and sharing today. Wishing Stephen well.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Alex - you've got our/your inherited history .. but as say so much more through the indigenous peoples of north America.

Is planet Cassa real - gosh I must rewrite the history books!

@ Bish - yes, thanks for enlightening us ... I wrote about Corn in the early Americas 1500s ... but realise it was all through word of mouth, as had been the case here, til the printing press made life easier in Europe to start with.

The Moche culture goes back to 300AD as per the Gold Maize held in the Larco Museum, Lima, Peru.

The Spanish recorded the histories of the central American Indians in their native language ... again I wrote about Bernadino de Sahagun in that post of November 2010 (Tales, Sagas, Stories we can glean from our vegetables). And yes the Spanish were around before the British ...

@ Monti - it brings your and our landscape to life doesn't it .. Virginia certainly has some major connections as the first English colony at Jamestown: must be fascinating to visit and learn about.

Pleasure re your new art blog ... and yes it's great having Stephen here for his new book ...

@ Holly - thanks ... Stephen seems to have his tour tied down. I think we all add a little of reality in to our settings ...

@ Stephen - it's a pleasure .. seems like many are coming by to visit - which is good.

@ Diane - that's great to read .. Stephen will be pleased.

@ Elsie - thanks. And yes I can't visualise what 100 acres would amount to ... I should work it out somehow!! Small to some maybe, others huge ... as you say it brings a smile to our face ...

@ Susan - that's great if it's a relatively unknown setting .. and yes he flew over the pond and landed in good old Eastbourne!

@ Suzanne - that's good and I guess the habit sticks. I'd have to use some of my childhood places if I ever wrote a novel or short stories.

It seems Stephen made the right decision to travel with his parents and catch some of their history, and fill in some background details - good point you made, Suzanne.

@ Rosey - thanks .. and yes good luck to Stephen for the book release.

@ Karen - it was a wee plane ride!! But it's great to see him here. Pleasure to open the pages for Salem's Daughters ...

Cheers to you all and thanks for your visit encouraging Stephen on his way - Hilary

Annalisa Crawford said...

I've just started using real places. Before, I used to be very ambiguous. Getting first-hand detail from your parents is a real treat - how cool you managed to use it!

Hello Hilary :-)

Chrys Fey said...

I was born in Michigan, but I've never got to see it was you have, Stephen, or even as you talked about it in this post.

I of course use real places and places I've been to in my stories. Hurrican Crimes is set in Florida. I pictured the setting and Beth's home as the house I was in when Hurricane Francis hit in 2004. But I also use places I've never been to before. That's where research is needed.

Chrys Fey said...

I was born in Michigan, but I've never got to see it was you have, Stephen, or even as you talked about it in this post.

I of course use real places and places I've been to in my stories. Hurrican Crimes is set in Florida. I pictured the setting and Beth's home as the house I was in when Hurricane Francis hit in 2004. But I also use places I've never been to before. That's where research is needed.

DMS said...

Stephen's book sounds so good! I have never been to Michigan- but it is only a day or two's drive from my house. Fun to learn about the story behind the story. I use a mix of real and made up, but realistic places. Wishing the best of luck to Stephen!
~Jess

klahanie said...

Hi Hilary,

And of course, a hearty welcome to that superstar author, Stephen Tremp. Delighted to see Stephen visiting your site, Hilary.

Fascinating snippet and nothing like a short blurb especially now that I found out that a "blurb" has nothing to do with burping.....

Congrats and being such a nice guy, I shall take the liberty of sharing this post.

Gary

dolorah said...

This is certainly the place to come for rich culture :) Thanks for the snippet.

Stephen Tremp said...

Wow! Lot's of really cool comments! Just getting home from a long day at work and it's great to read what everyone has to say.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Chrys - it's funny how our views are so different of similar areas. Our perception as we journey through life.

I imagine using the hurricane challenges as settings could be really helpful to set the atmospherics - and a different twist to 'normal weather'. Research is definitely needed - and shows when we don't use it.

@ Jess - just a day or two day's drive to visit - I had to laugh!! If I did a day or two's drive I'd be in Iceland!! Somehow?! It is interesting to see how the story gets crafted isn't it.

@ Gary - thanks for visiting and tying in with Stephen. No a blurb is not a burb or burp! But I do wonder where the description came from. Thanks too for sharing this post for us ..

@ Donna - thanks so much and am glad you enjoyed Stephen's snippet.

@ Stephen - yes they're a good crowd here .. aren't they. Glad we made it worthwhile for you ..

Cheers to one and all - Hilary

Lynn said...

Fascinating! I'll look out for your book on Amazon.

Tyrean Martinson said...

I love that a road trip with your parents influenced your writing, Stephen. I think it's cool that you used a real place for your fiction!

When I went on a road trip to the Grand Canyon a few years ago that influenced me to include the Canyonlands (yes, not very exciting name) in Champion in Flight. I wanted a place where eagles, or in the case of my book, griffins, could soar. :)

Susan Scott said...

Thanks for placing Michigan Stephen on the map - I was never sure! Your book sounds really interesting, good luck with it. I liked what I read ....and thanks to Hilary for this interview post.

D Biswas said...

Thanks for the sharing Stephen-- (wonderful pictures), and thank you Hilary for hosting him!

Sorry to leave a link, Blogger won't allow my wordpress comment:
Daily (w)rite

Lynda R Young said...

I love the inspiration for your book. Places and memories, even other people's memories, make such great inspiration.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Lynn - thanks .. Stephen will be so pleased.

@ Tyrean - yes he was lucky to have had that time travelling and discussing old family haunts and where they came from originally.

I can see that some of the landscape of the Grand Canyon could influence you greatly and then you wanted to include it in your book - griffins soaring sound fun!

@ Susan - I'm glad the maps helped Susan ... the two explained the area a bit more to me. The story line does sound interesting doesn't it ...

@ Damyanti - glad you enjoyed the pictures ... and it's a pleasure having Stephen here - no worries re the link.

@ Lynda - he's with you tomorrow ... and yes isn't the inspiration good to read about. Memories are an essential to our lives ..

Thanks everyone - Stephen has been really pleased to see you all here - take care ... cheers Hilary

Denise Covey said...

Hi Hilary and Stephen. All the best for Salems Daughters Stephen. I've said that a lot lately!

Diana Wilder said...

Very interesting book! Best of luck!

Deniz Bevan said...

Congratulations on your book, Stephen!
Love the snarky end of that excerpt :-)

Joanne said...

Nice of you to host Stephen. Sounds like quite a tale - evil in the cornfields. Arrgghh.

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

Hi Stephen, congratulations. Hi Hilary. Stephen, you sound like you were prepared for success. That's the way to live. I went to Scotland Yard because I needed to see the lobby so I could add the description to one of my manuscript. Apparently you need a week's notice. Preparation is vital! No, I didn't get in.

Lisa said...

I've been following Stephen and his progress with this novel. So nice to know it is out now!!! Thanks Hilary, for hosting him!

Marja said...

Best of luck to Stephen. What a great read. I love the setting of the story Nothing better then the country site and how nice of you Hillary to show his artistry

Crystal Collier said...

Yay for Stephen! I think when we write based on places we know, the prose rings truer. I always have a visual reference for anywhere I write about, and it definitely focuses my writing.

Patsy said...

Hi Stephen. Good luck with your book.

I like to read, and write, books set in real places.

Jeffrey Scott said...

Hey Stephen, I know I've said this before, but congrats on the book.
Yes, in my writing I tend to use actual places for settings in my stories. Hamilton High is the name of the real life school I attended. I often wonder if I should or shouldn't do that.

N. R. Williams said...

Hi Hilary
Stephen's book sounds wonderful. Salem's past is a good subject. I wish him much success.
Nancy

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Diana - the does sound has though there are a few tails/twists!

@ Deniz - Stephen does add in a bit of snarky humour doesn't he ... and create a mini diversion to think about ..

@ Joanne - thanks - and evil in the cornfields ... rather Arrgghh - yes too true.

@ Joylene - good to see you here. How interesting about the Scotland Yard bit ... that they wouldn't let you in - frustrating to say the least.As you say 'be prepared' ...

@ Lisa - he had his tour well planned and certainly has got his novel out into the wider world.

@ Marja - good to see you ... and it sounds like Stephen's setting in the countryside is a good one ... the pictures here can help.

@ Crystal - exactly Yay for Stpehen. We do need to understand our settings and bring them to life and I'm sure having those little details to hand to remind you as you write the story must help enormously.

@ Patsy - good luck with yours too ... and if we can visualise where the setting is - it helps bring the book to life - I so agree.

@ Jeffrey - Stephen has done amazingly well at getting Salem's Daughters out there. Interesting you used a real place, with its name ... and didn't even try to hide it - I'm sure all will be well.

@ Nancy - thanks for coming by - it certainly sounds a fascinating read based around some gory details of real life long ago .. the cat element is clever ...

Thanks everyone - we all wish Stephen much success .. cheers Hilary

Murees Dupé said...

Congratulations on your new book. It sounds like a nice scary read:) It was nice learning more about you and your upbringing. Wishing you much success.

Stephen Tremp said...

Thank you Hilary for hosting me! Always an great place to stop along the Blog Tour journey. And thanks everyone for stopping by and saying hello!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Murees - it was good learning more about Stephen and his upbringing wasn't it; let's hope the book has much success.

@ Stephen - it was a pleasure to host you and you've had some great friends stop by ...

Cheers to you all and let's enjoy reading Salem's Daughters. Hilary