Times Change and people don’t.

This phrase from my mother is true.(She did say this.)

And it’s true. Because from the ancient world to today, people still love, laugh, cry, fight, make love, fall in love, fall out of love, struggle with love, and all that comes with it. So, little things pop up beyond Rome. For instance…

Love Backwards.I got to thinking about the marriages arranged in Rome. Many were very successful, and they did love each other. But it started with respect and expected roles: He provides for the family. She takes care of the home and family. And over time, they fell in love. That approach is somewhat different. Would it work in today’s world? Allyson and Steve try to find out.

Well, 18 Wheeler came about in an odd way. I drafted a story not published yet. And In it was a minor character – Carrie the secretary. I do not remember how I ended up with her on an 18-wheeler, but she did. My nephew Spike (who is in the story), and his wife helped me put flesh and the bones of this story and I did learn a lot about the trucking world which was fun.

Then came the image of John shoving Carrie into the cab of his 18-wheeler and Carrie yelping as he did so. Then the story just evolved. What was fun was friends told me about their favorite cities and that determined their trip across the USA.

What struck me was, after this mature romance was published, (with Carrie -a widow and John-a widower), I became a widow. That threw me for a loop. I could not read or write anything for three years. Alas, I’m baaaack! (And, nope. I just wanna write romance.)

Now Mirrored Reflections started out as Beauty and the Beast—who’s the beauty ; who’s the beast? But the title was overused, and I wanted a fresh title for a story of PTSD and Complex Trauma. And this was one wild ride – or write.

It started with watching Dancing with the Stars when Karina Smirnoff and JR Martinez won the mirrored trophy. He was a burn victim that left him a very scarred man. But Karina made him so sexy! Wow.

So, in came Chad, a burn victim with PTSD, who has a student nurse trying to escape the world of human trafficking (complex trauma) Sierra. He is destroyed on the outside. She’s destroyed on the inside. They are mirrored reflections of each other.

Should I say I learned much from researching the painful world of the burn units and survival, the PTSD and complex trauma, the brutal, soul-destroying world of human trafficking and the struggle to escape. This story opened my eyes to say the least. But God got Chad and Sierra – as well as me – through this harsh reality from hell to hope.

In ways Mirrored Reflections and Vows of Revenge proves my mother is right… ‘times change but people don’t.’ We all struggle with love and healing.

What’s next…no telling. Of course, Season Two of Red Fury.. Finish Pompeii’s Plague whose heroine will resemble ‘Queen of the South’, Maybe even write Blackberry Jam that gave me Carrie the Secretary, Chantilly Pink the second trucker story on an 18-wheeler. It would be really nice to get back to my very first draft that is a fantastic story…but truly a’ shitty first draft’ (as Ann Lamont would call it) — Shadows in the Mist – my first story based on fact of King Arthur, Guinevere, and Lancelot – and is wrapped with my story.

God only knows if I have time to finish these and more. Hang in there with me and let’s see where this writing world takes us.


JF Ridgley

Award-winning author of the Agricola Series Red Fury, Vows of Revenge, 18 Wheeler

Historical Fiction – Available at Amazon, Books2Read

Contemporary Romance – Available at Amazon, Books2Read (and that’s everywhere else)For more visit JFRidgley.com

Times change yes. But people don’t. That’s the fun of writing and reading.

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