By Nancy Loyan, author of Lab Test, Hearts of Steel, and Wishes and Tears
The idea of time travel has intrigued people for generations. The ability to experience or recreate the past has caused a great deal of speculation and creative license.
I’m one of those people who find the concept interesting. As a teenager, I loved to read paranormal and time travel novels. There was the classic The Time Machine by H.G. Wells, and anything by Jules Verne fueled my imagination, as did television series The Time Tunnel.
Even as an adult, the idea has struck a chord. One of my favorite films is Somewhere in Time. Other films include The Time Traveler’s Wife and Back to the Future.
Is it any wonder that I would write a time travel romance? Thus, my novel Wishes and Tears was born. The idea of my heroine traveling back in time to the Great 1906 San Francisco Earthquake and Fire came from the purchase of a musty antique book, a first-hand accounting of the event. The prose was like reading a sermon and the photographs were priceless. The tragedy unfolded moment by moment on the yellowed pages. It led to the purchase of additional books chronicling the catastrophe. These books have an honored place on my bookshelf. Their titles tell all: San Francisco’s Horror of Earthquake, Fire and Famine (1906), San Francisco Earthquake Horror (1906), Complete Story of the San Francisco Earthquake and Other Great Disasters: Authentic Memorial Edition (1906), and The San Francisco Earthquake (1971).
One night, I had a dream about a woman’s car splashing into the San Francisco Bay and her surfacing back in time where she would experience the historical event. Of course, being a writer, an idea was born. Being an obsessive writer, I had to research the Great Earthquake and Fire more thoroughly. During the process, I became intrigued by the practice of medicine during that time. My hero had to be a doctor. This led to additional research pouring over antique medical books. A plot was born.
My love of history and research made writing this novel a joy. I love to share my findings with others. So much that we take for granted never existed in the past. I feel like a word archeologist. I get to travel back in time through research and experience it through my characters.
If you had the opportunity to travel back in time, what time period would you select?