|Jane "Jeanette" Vaughan Lewis Johns|
Born: 1827, Hay, Breconshire, Wales; Died: 1890, Jacks Valley, Nevada.
Mormon Handcart Pioneer of 1856
I am heavily involved in writing. It is far enough along that I can feel confident there will be some kind of finished product. It is a history of my 4th-Great Aunt, Jane "Jeanette" Vaughan Lewis Johns (1827-1890). Her life was fascinating and I have so many pieces of it but not the full story. So . . . I'm taking some poetic license to write in the historical-fiction genre.
I'm modeling after John dos Passos or Aleksandr Soltzenitsyn who wrote historical fiction interspersed with real documents and contemporaneous newspaper articles of the day. I have some of those things for Aunt Jane and family so I'm putting them in and writing stories around them. I also have some themes and I think I can work it into an artistic whole.
It's really coming along well and I'm quite excited--Pulitzer Prize excited. But my wife says not to get my hopes up.
You can read family-history reports of Jane at our Family Blog: johnelinorvaughan.blogspot.com. You may see what an interesting character she is to write about.
My motivation is the notation on the 1880 U.S. Census for Jacks Valley, Nevada that Jane could neither read nor write. She was likely verbally bi-lingual in Welsh and English. So who is there to tell her story? At each interesting piece of her life and extended family, I feel a part of that story coming on. I just have to write it down: and massage it by the facts and narrative that carry it forward.
The temptation is strong to reveal themes or excerpts already completed. I will refrain until I have a satisfactory completion.