Saturday, August 18, 2012

The Real Old Days

Looking at things the way they once were...
How I see it

By Paisley Kirkpatrick

Digging for gold from early dawn until dusk was definitely a backbreaking job, but those men who traveled across country and from around the world had the fever. They wanted their chance at that BIG gold strike. My great, great grandfather was one of them. Luckily for us, he kept a journal during his journey. It was so well written that it rests under glass in the Bancroft Library at the University of California, Berkeley.

Can you imagine a miner had to find an ounce of gold a day to just break even? Most miners barely found enough for daily expenses. The peak production of placer gold occurred in 1853. Every year after that, more and more men arrived in California, but less gold was found.  Thousands of disillusioned gold seekers returned home with little to show for their endeavors, glad to escape with their health. A fair share remained, searching for a job. They became the backbone to the settling of California. My grandfather ended up not going for the gold, but setting up his medical practice instead. A lot of fortunes were made not in the gold fields, but in supplying goods, meals, and comfort.


I found this rebuilding of the lives and communities an exciting time in history. My story Paradise Pines Series: Night Angel is set after the boom, when many miners, broke and looking for wages, stayed in Paradise Pines, a town developed during the gold rush. Some let disappointment send them into lives of drink and gambling. Others pulled together to rebuild their town and setup businesses, some of which still stand today in Placerville, the town I fashioned this community after. My hero anonymously gives aid to these downtrodden townsfolk by traveling through abandoned tunnels under the town. When the heroine comes to town with hopes of rebuilding her life, he wants to keep her in town and promises he'll make her dream of having her own music hall a reality.  

Paisley Kirkpatrick is one of the fellow authors I am pleased to share with your from Desert Publishing. Paisley, who writes her stories in a different and unique way also opens the doors for us to take another look at the past and how it became such a part of our lives today.

Check out more about Paisley and her writing over at www.desertbreezepublishing.com

27 comments:

  1. Paisley, I can't wait to read your book. It's so exciting that you used your own ancestor for reference. Congratulations.

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  2. I love what you shared. Makes your writing sound so interesting.
    Betty Fimple

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  3. Hi Mona. Thank you for stopping today and for your continued support. It is fun to highlight my ancestors.

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  4. Thank you, Betty. I am glad you liked my excerpt. It was a fun story to write.

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  5. Love the back story. This period not only built the backbone of California but of the entire United States, as well. Looking forward to reading this series. Can't Wait!

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  6. I'm SO looking forward to reading your book, Paisley! I know it's going to be great. :-)

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  7. I'm interested in early mining and have toured a few old mines around the country. After the boom is a unique idea for the back drop to a romance. Rock it Paisley!
    Best to you on the series.

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  8. This sounds great, Paisley. Thanks for sharing. I am constantly amazed by how many of us having the makings of fantastic stories right in our own families. And you have made one of yours come to life.

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  9. Thanks, J.Morgan. I can't wait to see what you have to say after reading the series. I am in awe at how many survived under the conditions they lived in those years.

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  10. Thanks for your never-ending support, Maeve. I appreciate you a lot.

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  11. Thanks, Sandy. In one of the stories in the series we deal with a gold mine. My daughter and I explored on here locally - what an experience being underground. They were very brave to work in the mines.

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  12. I agree. I have great records from family members thanks to my Mother who kept our genealogy for us. There are a few more to come.

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  13. Wow this is so interesting, Paisley! Very cool that you used your family history as a basis for the stories! I'm soooo looking forward to reading your series!

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  14. Paisley, your book sounds wonderful! I can't wait to read it!

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  15. Hi Vonda. Thanks for your support and your help as a great teacher for this humble student.

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  16. Waving Victoria. So nice for you to stop by. Appreciate your support. :)

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  17. Your new book sounds interesting, Paisley. So much room for conflict. It will go on my wish list for sure. :)

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  18. Hubby and I experienced 'the good ole days' when we bought a farmhouse built in the 1860's in NH. No insulation, vermin, and wavy windows. We spent nights around the woodstove when the power went out. Lived it;loved it.A great story, Paisley!

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  19. Thanks, Gerri. It's a good thing there is a lot of conflict - it is always a difficult thing for me to torture my characters. Plenty of ways in the Wild West, though.

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  20. It sounds like you did have an exciting adventure living in the farmhouse. We live in the Sierra Mountains and use a wood stove to heat out house. It comes in handy when the power goes off. As far as the vermin - don't like it when they decide to eat the house from inside out. ;)

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  21. I love it when I read a book and I can tell the author did her research. I think you've taken that to a new level and it sounds like your story is a thriving mix of imagination and real history. I'm looking forward to reading it!

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  22. Thank you, Carla. I love doing the research and this story turned out to be lots of fun as well. I hope you like it as much as I like writing it.

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  23. Thank you Shirley for having me as a guest today. It was an interesting time for me and I had a great time.

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  24. www.lindseybrookes.comAugust 19, 2012 at 8:10 AM

    Late chiming in, but looking forward to reading this story! Love historical romances!

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  25. Paisley,

    I cannot wait to read your book. The hero sounds so interesting and what a great time period to have set it. Dangerous and desperate men around every corner sharing a town with those working hard to build a new life. Very exciting!

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  26. Thanks Lindsey. I hope you enjoy my historical. :)

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  27. Hi Samantha. That you for stopping by and supporting me. It is definitely an exciting time to write about.

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