We were lucky to have the opportunity to interview author Linda Spalding recently. Linda’s book, ““, was one of our book club selections here at Ottawa Valley Moms and the book left a lasting impression on all of us who read it.
I don’t think it was a decision. I’ve always let myself write. I’ve kept journals and written stories. In my thirties I wrote a novel, all by hand, in a spiral notebook. I had no real thought of publishing it, but when I moved to Canada and met other writers, I decided to rewrite the novel and look for an agent.
I’m afraid I don’t know much about blogging, etc. but nothing even begins to compare to the complexity of a novel, which requires a huge dose of commitment from both the author and the reader. I love the Internet because it’s immediate (I’m using it right now) and offers the opportunity for real candor. But it isn’t an artistic form. It doesn’t involve conception and interior struggle.
As a child, I learned that my father’s ancestors were slave owners. This shocked me, as my father was a very liberal lawyer who defended desegregation in the public schools. Later I learned that those ancestors were Quakers, and I couldn’t understand how that first slaveowner had been converted to something he must have abhorred. I’ve been thinking about him for years and years and finally began to write his story.
I have freedom from want. I have freedom from fear. Those are the big issues, of course. I also have freedom to do what I please with my days, although that was not always the case. Therefore I am able to spend my time writing, which is a great freedom and pleasure.
This is a story about moral choices. It’s the story of a man who wants to be good and honourable and somehow seems to fail. His own failures spread to others – his family, his neighbours. His choices have tragic consequences and yet all of these things happen today. All of us have been disappointed in our own reactions and choices. All of us have been ashamed. We all have standards which we fail to meet.
I am a collector of books. I have a shelf full of books that relate to slavery, to life in the southern US in the nineteenth century, to religious beliefs, to medical practices, to geography.
She is hoping to write again!
HUGE thank you to Linda for taking the time to answer our questions. Please check out her website at www.LindaSpalding.com.