Their Love For Each Other

Stephen Carter Author Interview

Battlegrounds follows a shipping captain and former slave who become involved in the abolitionist cause during the Civil War, working against the Confederacy. What was the inspiration for the setup of your story?

As to inspiration, you might say I was curious for where I lived near Vancouver BC, there were hardly any black people living there other than Hogan’s Alley a black enclave in Vancouver’s downtown area (later torn down for an expressway). American history, especially the Civil War era before, during and after came to my attention in an American History course I took at UBC (University of British Columbia).  

What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book? 

Well the major national themes were the issue of slavery, then abolitionism followed by succession of Southern States leading to civil war. Others were more localized such as racism in Boston not only in the white society (burning of the black church, the violent protests etc) but the black as well as demonstrated in the funeral gathering in warehouse #3. Finally on a personal level the effects of racism on John Saxton and Virginia as they struggled to clarify their love for each other despite the opposition from her parents and his high society mother.   

What kind of research did you do for this novel to ensure you captured the essence of the story’s theme? 

Ah research, research! For every hour writing there was 2 hours of research or more. 14 years ago when I wrote the four books which later became the MATARI  series, the internet was more honest, more reliable than it is today. Because of my geog/hst majors at UBC and a 21 year teaching career in High School Social Studies, I was able to find the material I needed to embellish a story that would educate as well as entertain the reader. Later on I added pictures of various sorts to bring the characters, the settings and the book’s plot to life. In doing so, it gave the reader a better sense of the story. Along with thousands of notes scribbled down after watching historical TV shows, reading books, hearing a certain word worthy phrase or late at night getting an idea, I persevered but only after double checking the veracity of the information.   

Can you tell us where the book goes and where we’ll see the characters in the next book? 

As thousands of books of hist/fic are published anew each year around the world, very few really make an impact or become a commercial success because of it. Famous hist/fict authors such as Ken Follett and Wilbur Smith have an advantage after writing many books that became best sellers. But they too had to start from scratch as I have done. Right now BATTLEGROUNDS is selling but slowly. As a writer I’m not in the same class as the aforementioned titans. Therefore the pictures etc. Hopefully have come to my rescue as well as my characters both real and fictional. In the next book THE DIE GAME, the characters remain the same, both good and evil as war descends upon them in all its fury. Here the tension escalates as characters we love die, or are horribly wounded or driven mad. War is all hell as Gen Sherman once said and thus Book 2 is living proof of that.

I did 2 tours of the South to meet the descendants of slaves, visit plantations of note, take photos, visit museums, battlefields, cities etc. relevant to the novels, and to clarify my internet research as to its accuracy.

Author Links: GoodReads | Website

A young John Saxton looks on helplessly as brutal slavers on the slave ship Wanderer throw their human cargo overboard to avoid capture by the American Naval Patrol. From then on the Boston shipping heir and his giant Maasai mentor Matari (Marcus Brown become implacable abolitionists.
A supporting cast of unforgettable characters are caught up in a web of murder, dark secrets and political intrigue. Arrayed against them are two arch villains Horatio Garrow and his hapless henchman Harley Blackstone.
Saxton and his beautiful black bride Virginia survive a dangerous milieu of Confederate espionage, high treason and the siege of Fort Sumter all brought to the fore by one man…..President Abraham Lincoln.

About Literary Titan

The Literary Titan is an organization of professional editors, writers, and professors that have a passion for the written word. We review fiction and non-fiction books in many different genres, as well as conduct author interviews, and recognize talented authors with our Literary Book Award. We are privileged to work with so many creative authors around the globe.

Posted on April 6, 2023, in Interviews and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.


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