November 26, 2014 § Leave a comment
Some reading material, and a bit of food for thought as you’re digesting your bird . . .
“It’s Long Past Time to Update the Thanksgiving Myth,” Talking Points Memo. New perspectives on the early origins of America, based in part on personal revelations from the research for Will Poole’s Island.
“A Taste of History,” Nantucket Magazine. Notes on the history of early English settlement on Nantucket and interactions with the resident Wampanoags. Includes a speculative menu of an imagined first Thanksgiving on the island.
November 21, 2014 § Leave a comment
Pleased to pass along this new review by Tinky Weisblat of the Greenfield, Mass Reporter, which called Will Poole’s Island “A sweet, insightful, riveting adventure tale.” Here’s an extended excerpt:
“Weed writes colorfully and with feeling, drawing readers into Will’s and Squamiset’s lives and making his characters believable and human. Even the Puritans who persecute Will and Squamiset are treated with some degree of understanding even if their rigidity is difficult to condone. The author notes in an afterword that he is descended from both early settlers and Native Americans himself, which may account for his ability to depict both world views.Will Poole’s Island does several things and does them well. It is a sweet coming-of-age story, a riveting adventure tale, an insightful analysis of a difficult time in American history and an eloquent plea for understanding among all peoples.”
Read the full review here.
And here’s a second excerpt, this one from a new review by The Book Trail blog:
“Will Poole’s Island takes you and throws you head first into the 17th century. So evocative in every sense of the word, it’s as if the scenes surround you as you read – the sights, sounds, and smells waft around you as you turn the pages. . . . It’s both an adventure story and a coming of age story but it’s the friendship between Will and Squamiset which will linger with me for a long time to come.”
Read the full review here.
October 13, 2014 § Leave a comment
Thrilled to be embarking on an autumn mini book tour, during which I’ll be speaking, reading, and signing at several of New England’s great independent bookstores and libraries. Here’s the schedule of events. Come on out, I’d love to see you and sign your personal copy of Will Poole’s Island!THURSDAY, OCTOBER 23, 2014, 6:30 PM Bank Square Books 53 West Main Street Mystic, Connecticut SATURDAY, OCTOBER 25, 2014, 11:00 AM & 2:00 PM The Toadstool Bookshop in Peterborough (11AM) 12 Depot Square, Peterborough, NH & The Toadstool Bookshop in Keene (2PM)
At the Colony Mill Marketplace in Keene, NH SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 22, 2014, 4:00 PM World Eye Bookshop
156 Main Street, Greenfield, MA SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2014, 2:00 pm Duxbury Free Library
77 Alden Street, Duxbury, Massachusetts
September 29, 2014 § Leave a comment
Very pleased to mark the publication of this interview with Alden Jones and the Fiction Writers Review. We had a nice discussion about the “genre” of historical fiction, the process of researching Will Poole’s Island, the differences between writing novels and short stories, and more.
A brief excerpt:
“Here’s the thing about writing historical fiction: you’re not trying to reconstruct or mimic history, which would be altogether boring even if it weren’t impossible. What you’re trying to do is to create a new version of it that will tell a good story while simultaneously capturing something essential, not only about the period, but also about contemporary life.”
Read the complete interview here.
September 23, 2014 § Leave a comment
What an honor to be included among the stellar group of authors participating in this year’s Brattleboro Literary Festival (October 2- 5, 2014) which for thirteen years has been one of the most dynamic and well attended celebrations of books and readers in New England. And what a blast to hang out with old friends, meet new ones, hear talented and interesting people discuss their work and read from it, all the events well attended, and the streets of good old Brattleboro teeming with readers and writers of every stripe. Thanks to the organizers and volunteers, my friends and fellow writers, and everyone who came out to celebrate the power and beauty of the written word!
August 28, 2014 § Leave a comment
Very pleased to note than an article about Will Poole’s Island appeared today in Nantucket’s prizewinning paper, The Inquirer and Mirror. I met with the I & M’s wonderful Kimberly Nolan when I was on the island last week. Kim is an organic farmer in addition to being a reporter. We discussed the research behind the book, Native American perspectives, Nantucket connections, and much more, and then Kim set us up with some delicious fresh eggs and tomatoes. All in all a very positive experience with the press! Click here to read the full article: “Historic Nantucket Reimagined“
August 2, 2014 § Leave a comment
Watch the trailer!
Immense gratitude to Ben Shumlin, the talented young (16!) filmmaker who produced this impressive short video, and his crew. We had a great time batting ideas around and shooting the footage in various wilderness settings, and it was fun to see how a video like this goes from a concept to a reality.
Some of the filming was done using a quadcopter drone; if you’re curious about that, or about the filming in general, there are photos and videos on my Facebook page. Please “like” the page while you’re there to see occasional posts on the book, some of the historical research that went in to it, and various other projects.
July 28, 2014 § Leave a comment
Great news this morning from one of the world’s greatest independent bookstores: Will Poole’s Island has been selected as Nantucket Bookworks‘ Teen Pick of the Month!
If you’ve been lucky enough to visit the mysterious and evocative isle of Nantucket then you know that this bookstore and its partner store, Mitchell’s Books, are essential landmarks for readers and must-do stops in historic downtown. It’s a great honor to receive this nod from what has long been a rainy day refuge for me and countless others — all the sweeter because the historical and physical landscapes of the island were so important to the writing of the novel.
Order the book directly from the bookstore here.
July 14, 2014 § Leave a comment
It was a true pleasure to chat recently with Literary New England Radio Show host Cindy Wolfe Boynton about Will Poole’s Island. We discussed the genesis of the book, some of the historical research that went into it, the extent to which the protagonist is an autobiographical figure, and my version of the 21st century writing life. Cindy asked good questions, and I began by reading a brief excerpt from Chapter Four of the book. All in all, a most enjoyable conversation!
The show, which also features distinguished New England authors Deborah Harkness, Erika Johansen, and Courtney Maum, aired Monday, July 14, 2014, and is available as a podcast for you to download and hear at your own leisure by clicking here.
Note: Once you download the podcast you can move the cursor to whatever point you want to start listening. My portion of the interview begins at minute 38.50.
July 14, 2014 § Leave a comment
The article grew out of a talk I gave at Grub Street’s fantastic Muse and the Marketplace conference in May, 2014, and analyzes key excerpts from great historical fiction novels such as The Age of Innocence, The English Patient, Cold Mountain, The King Must Die, and more. If this sounds interesting to you, click here. Hope you enjoy it!