Saturday, December 27, 2008

Distasters Happen

There is never a good time for disaster. Put a disaster during the holidays and it seems worse for some reason. Maybe I'll rattle on about the philosophical, cultural, or emotional reasons for why disaster during the holidays is so awful, but for now, I just want to share a need with you.

One of my author friends, Linnea Heinrichs, lost her home to a fire last Sunday. She and her husband purchased the 50-year-old farmhouse in northern British Columbia several years ago to restore and run a small farm. She's blogged her small-farming efforts here. I'm unclear on the details of the fire, but Linnea said all was lost. Her son managed to save the computer tower and her laptop, but all of her research for her books, as well as all other household effects, were lost.

Several of us at the Backspace writing community are rallying around Linnea to help rebuild her life. Kim Stagliano suggested that anyone interested in donating to Linnea and her family consider sending gift cards, which can be used to purchase anything for sale on the world wide web.

Another thing you can do is buy Linnea's historial YA novel, THE FIRST VIAL:

Set against the backdrop of the inescapable horror of the fourteenth-century plague and medieval heroism and chivalry, The First Vial details the morbid reality of a time when the Black Death forced people to take the law into their own hands to survive the wave of chaos that was ushered in.

Katherine, Lady of Crenfeld Castle, pits her wits against the enemies trying to take over her castle. After surviving two attempts on her life by a land-hungry priest, she is forced to leave her castle just as the plague engulfs her village. The villainous priest seizes her lands, convicts the innocent, and burns them at the stake. As the plague rages on, the tension intensifies. Balanced with intrigue and action, The First Vial builds to a feverish pitch as death saturates the country and Katherine must battle not only for her lands and castle but for her life.

Heinrichs's categorical research into medieval town life, castles, and the Black Death, make the this novel a noteworthy companion to Connie Willis' Hugo-winning Doomsday Book and clearly mark Heinrichs as a new talent in this genre.

You can send Linnea Amazon Gift Card to her at this email address:

You can buy Linnea's book, THE FIRST VIAL at any of these online bookstores:

As an aside... my stepdad's business burned down a week ago. It's a copier and printer repair shop located behind his home--the house I grew up in. The heat burst the windows on the house, but thankfully, it didn't catch fire. We went over the morning after the fire and helped him sort through the ashes. There was nothing salvagable. All his tools from 40 years of business, his customer's machines, and all his records, completely lost.


Kim Stagliano said...

What better season to reach out? It's a sin Linnea lost her house - thank goodness she and her family are safe though. You're a doll for jumoing right in, Carolyn. Happy New Year.

Carolyn Burns Bass said...

You are so right, Kim. Thanks for spearheading the efforts at Backspace. I am always amazed and encouraged at all you do. Hugs and blisses.