Sunday, March 1, 2020

We All Fall Down launches today!

Two years in the making, but finally, We All Fall Down - Stories of Plague and Resilience is here. This new anthology includes stories by acclaimed writers of historical fiction; David Blixt, Jean Gill, Kristin Gleeson, Jessica Knauss, Laura Morelli, Katherine Pym, Deborah Swift, Melodie Winawer, and yours truly. 

The concept

I've always been intrigued by the Black Death. Not merely because my interests tend to border on the macabre, but because I'm fascinated by the human will. That resolute determination to ensure survive at all costs, even when it seems hopeless. Those who faced such a harrowing time as during the plague must have thought the world was at its end. How could they not while whole families died off and European towns lost so much of their populations?

When I first discussed the idea of writing about the plague, those who knew about the period responded almost universally, "What? Why would you want to write about something so horrifying?" But I knew within the truly terrible, dark moments of human history, there were always people whose actions provided a beacon of hope.

How the authors became involved

I also knew I couldn't do justice to the breadth and scale with which the Black Death impacted Europe. A single story from me would not do. So naturally, I sought other authors who might be interested in a partnership, a collection of short stories. And I'm so grateful to the authors who accepted and contributed their brilliant tales to the anthology. I'd met and admired David, Laura and Melodie through the Historical Novel Society. Jessica and I both write about Spain in the Middle Ages. I knew of Jean through her excellent Troubadours series and I had read Kristin's The Pursuit of the Unicorn. Katherine and Deborah are also well-known for their 17th century novels.With enthusiasm, each of them plunged into their stories. As I secretly hoped, common themes began to emerge, no matter how different each of our contributions ultimately would be. Among the themes, hope, love, and importantly, life after death.

Working together as a team 

At the outset, assembling a team of authors for a project like this can seem daunting. Unless, you already know you're dealing with professionals focused on the success of the story. For anyone else who is considering working with others on any collection of stories, I heartily recommend it and hope you'll be as fortunate to form connections with a talented group of writers. Teamwork has made this project so worthwhile and it's been an excellent opportunity to learn more about other unique skill sets each author brought to the anthology. 

Kristin, Melodie, David, Katherine, Jessica, Laura, Deborah, Jean, here's to us! Like you, I look forward to the success of our great work. 

About We All Fall Down - Stories of Plague and Resilience 

Plague has no favorites.

In this anthology, USA Today, international bestselling, and award-winning authors imagine a world where anyone—rich, poor, young, old—might be well in the morning and dead by sundown.
Readers will follow in the footsteps of those who fought to rebuild shattered lives as the plague left desolation in its wake.
* An Irish woman tends her dying father while the Normans threaten her life and property—
* A Hispano-Muslim doctor fights the authorities to stem the spread of the deadly pestilence at great personal cost—
* A Tuscan street hawker and a fresco painter watch citizens perish all around them even as they paint a better future—
* A Spanish noblewoman lives at the mercy of a jealous queen after plague kills the king—
* The Black Death leaves an uncertain legacy to Dante's son—
* In Venice, the artist Titian agonizes over a death in obscurity—
* A Scottish thief loses everything to plague and repents in the hope of preventing more losses—
* Two teenagers from 2020 time-travel to plague-stricken London and are forever changed—
* And when death rules in Ottoman-occupied Greece, a Turk decides his own fate. 
Nine tales bound together by humanity's fortitude in the face of despair: a powerful collection of stories for our own time.
In dark and deadly times, love and courage shine bright. 
Available Now


Jean Gill said...

I really enjoyed reading all the other stories in our anthology - so varied but as you say, common themes emerging and, although there are indeed dark moments, the overall tone is surprisingly uplifting. I loved visiting so many places and periods too - truly international.

Lisa J Yarde said...

Jean, it's been a true pleasure. We each have such unique voices but finding those common themes among our stories was a true thrill.

Katherine Pym said...

This has been a great adventure. Thanks so much for having me tag along.

Time flies when you're having fun, or writing novels.

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