One of my dear, reliable readers marched out of her study waving my manuscript and announced, "This can't be an adventure tale. There's no map!"
It was true. The Wise Men: A Christmas Adventure had to have a map. No hero or heroine can EVER embark on an adventure unless the novelist provides a map. It's the unmistakable signal to the reader that exciting events in all sorts of places are about to happen. And finding an illustrator--Jill Davis--who would turn my hand-scrawled version into art became one of the joys of Christmas 2012.
I titled the map "Locations Seen and Unseen" because it juxtaposes the known with the unknown. My novella takes as its premise that Northern Israel at the time of the Assyrian Dispersion in 721 B.C. had good people who didn't deserve the same fate as the wicked. We've all heard of the Lost Ten Tribes. Well, my novella gives an alternate history for where some of them went and how they co-existed with people of the Middle East, unknown and undiscovered for centuries, until the Meridian of Time.
Causes Jean Stringam Supports