For those who want to read about a work-in-progress …
For those who have read a little about Voice of the Ashes and want to know more …
For those who can’t resist a peek inside a book before it’s finished …
Voice of the Ashes
GENRE: Historical Fiction
SETTING: London, England, 1555. Mary I is reigning—a reign of terror to those opposed to the Catholic church. A reign over a land of verdant farms, stinking prisons, and varying beliefs hushed by the law. Yet a remnant remains, troubled on every side, yet not distressed, whose hope is built on their Saviour Jesus Christ.
LENGTH: 350 avg. book pages
INSPIRATION: Really, this began as a short story about a man handing out tracts on the street. I had written two paragraphs—maybe three—when I discussed it with one of my sisters, and she suggested I change the time period to the Reformation. Ideas grew from there!
THEME SONG: Ashes (I’m sorry about the poor quality of this recording–especially the clock ticking in the background)
THEMATIC POEM: London’s Martyrs
You’re taken out of homes of love and peace And through the streets marched like a common thief Through gates whose banging shut tell no release Unless, of course, you recant your belief. Your body subject to the lash’s pains, Your only comfort—dungeon, dark, and chains. Yet you find hope there in your mouldy cell: Others have walked this dreadful path before. Amid the mocking jests and reeking smell You look to God, praise Him from that damp floor. You know you’ll need His strength in days to come When great temptations—strong—at you are flung. There’s no denying truth, and you stand firm Though at the start your heart beat quick with fear. It’s to Smithfield you’re brought, with smoke still warm, Hanging over ashes of others dear. You seal your stand in flame, a passing glow, But your courage lights countless souls below.
VISION: Life is difficult. Relationships are difficult. And sometimes it’s difficult to see God’s love in this world, but through it all, God is faithful—He won’t let you down. People may abandon or betray you, but God always wants a relationship with you. And though at the time we may not understand why hard things happen, God has a purpose. Always.
PROTAGONIST: Laurence Weston (I like to think he has a middle name, but that’s not historically accurate)
AGE: Nineteen years
APPEARANCE: He has dark hair, brown eyes, is thin, and stands around 5’7”.
PERSONALITY/TEMPERAMENT: ISFJ/phlegmatic melancholy
FAMILY STATUS: Laurence’s father is a Catholic priest, which makes life difficult under Queen Mary’s law against married clergy. His mother’s parents rejected her for her marriage to Mr. Weston. Laurence has two living siblings, Hugh and Ellen.
AUTHOR’S FAVOURITE …
CHAPTER: The last one, Chapter 32. I get emotional every time I read it.
PARAGRAPH: “We need none of your words, Laurence. You told me yourself that you would live your way of life no matter what I did to you.” He chuckled a dry, mirthless chuckle. “But I’m sorry to say you cannot live if you are dead.”
SENTENCE: I can’t say I have an absolute favourite, so here are two:
I hope you enjoyed this sneak-peek into Voice of the Ashes. I have spent years working on this story and I’m excited to finally share a bit of it with you. Feel free to ask questions below–though I won’t answer with any spoilers!