Tag Archives: Historical Fiction

#Author Interview: Andrew Joyce

Andrew Joyce is the best-selling author of the Huck Finn series and Yellow Hair. He is currently working on his is next book, tentatively entitled, Mick Reilly. I’m thrilled to have him as my guest today. Welcome, Andrew! 

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Tell us a little about yourself.  Ain’t much to tell. I write books and I like to drink vodka a little too much. Oh, and I live on a boat (have been for forty-two years) with my dog, Danny. I mean I’ve been living on boats that long, not that Danny is forty-two. But to hear him complain, you would think he was that old.

What is the title and genre of your latest book?  Yellow Hair. Yellow HairHistorical Fiction

Tell us a little about Yellow Hair. Through no fault of his own, a young man is thrust into a new culture just at the time that culture is undergoing massive changes. It is losing its identity, its lands, and its dignity. He not only adapts, he perseveres and, over time, becomes a leader—and on occasion, the hand of vengeance against those who would destroy his adopted people.

Yellow Hair documents the injustices done to the Sioux Nation from their first treaty with the United States in 1805 through Wounded Knee in 1890. Every death, murder, battle, and outrage written about actually took place. The historical figures that play a role in this fact-based tale of fiction were real people and I use their real names. Yellow Hair is an epic tale of adventure, family, love, and hate that spans most of the 19th century. This is American history.

What inspired you to write it?  The inspiration for the book came to me when I was reading a short article and it made reference to the Great Sioux Uprising of 1862. It also mentioned that the outcome involved the largest mass execution in the history of the United States. That piqued my interest.

When I started my research into the incident, one thing led to another and before I knew it, I was documenting the entire history of the Sioux, who are also known as the Dakota, vis-à-vis the relationship between them and the United States.

Redemption
Book 1: Huck Finn series

What inspires you to write in general? Everything. It could be a song title, a line from a song, something I read, or just an offhand remark by someone I met at a bar. Once it was sunlight rippling on the surface of the water on a cool, crisp November morning.

When and what did you first start writing? One morning, about six years ago, I went crazy. I got out of bed, went downstairs, and threw my TV out the window. Then I sat down at the computer and wrote my first short story. Just for the hell of it, I threw it up on a writing site. A few months later, I was informed that it had been selected for publication in an anthology of the best short stories of 2011. I even got paid for it.

What authors have most influenced you? John Steinbeck, Louis L’Amour, Jack London, and Robert B. Parker just to name a few.

How do you write; outline or free flow? When I have an idea for a novel, I know the first sentence and the last paragraph (more or less). Then I sit down and start to tell the story. But the finished product is always different from what I envisioned. Sometimes I will take my characters to a place and they will rebel and take off on their own. Then I have no choice but to follow where they lead.

What genres do you like to read? Most. No romance for me. I’m
much too macho for that.

In what genres do you write? All genres.

Molly Lee
Book 2: Huck Finn series

Where and what time of day do you like to write? I prefer to write in the early morning hours when things are quiet. I usually get up around 2:00 a.m. and go to work. The commute is not long . . . only a few steps to my computer. I write until I run out of words. When I’m hot, I can knock out 6,000 words in three hours. But then I have to go back and edit them into something people would want to read. That can take up to two days.

Do you ever get writer’s block? If so, how do you deal with it? My problem, if you can call it a problem, is that I have too many words in my head. Apart from my novels, I have 150 short stories almost ready for publication and another thirty that I’ve started but don’t have the time to finish—at least not at the present time. But if I was affected by writer’s block on occasion, I’d cure it with vodka.

How do you schedule your time between writing and keeping your physical life together? I have no life other than writing. Unless you count walking my dog a few times a day. It’s the only exercise either one of us gets.

Do you have other publishing credits? Yes. One of my short stories entitled John, Kris, And Me, was included in a book (an anthology) titled: Best of 2011. It’s a compilation of short stories.

E-book or paper – do you have a preference? Paper.

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not writing? Reading.

Resolution
Book 3: Huck Finn series

What advice would you give a new writer? Read, read . . . and then read some more. Read everything you can get your hands on! Reading to a writer is as medical school is to a doctor, as physical training is to an athlete, as breathing is to life. When one reads stuff like the passage below, one cannot help but become a better writer.

“The afternoon came down as imperceptibly as age comes to a happy man. A little gold entered into the sunlight. The bay became bluer and dimpled with shore-wind ripples. Those lonely fishermen who believe that the fish bite at high tide left their rocks and their places were taken by others, who were convinced that the fish bite at low tide.”—John Steinbeck, Tortilla Flat

AND: Never, ever, ever, ever respond to a negative review!!!

What do you wish to say to your readers? Thank you for reading my books.

What do you hope will be the everlasting thoughts for readers who finish your book? For Yellow Hair, I hope my readers come away with a new and profound sense of our history. What we have done is so much more egregious and deplorable than I could have ever imagined. Genocide is genocide. Doesn’t matter if you call it Dachau or Wounded Knee.

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Learn more about Andrew:  Website   Blog   Amazon   Facebook   Twitter   LinkedIn   

I hope you enjoyed learning more about Andrew, his writing process, and his books. Please visit his sites, like and share.

Thanks so much for stopping by  

 

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#Westerns, buffalo chips, and dogs. #Bookreview YELLOW HAIR #SundayBlogShare @huckfinn76

Now here’s a corker! Barb Taub interviewed author Andrew Joyce on her blog today, along with — you guessed it — Andrew’s lifeline, author Danny the Dog. It’s about time Danny got the recognition he deserves. Well done, Danny! You, too, Andrew 🙂

Barb Taub

Interview with Andrew Joyce. And Danny the Dog.

Today, we’re sitting down with the authors Andrew Joyce and Danny the Dog for a joint interview. Andrew is the author of Yellow Hair and Danny writes a monthly column to keep his legions of fans informed as to his latest adventures. So, without further ado, let’s get started.

Thank you for agreeing to do this interview.

AJ: It’s a pleasure to be here.

DtD: Me too . . . I guess.

Tell me a little about yourselves and your backgrounds?

AJ: I’m a writer, which surprises me greatly. For the first three years of my writing career, I never referred to myself as a writer. It was only when the royalties started coming in and I could quit my day job that I dared think of myself as such.

dannyDanny the Dog.

DtD: I’m a dog.

What…

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Guest Post: Andrew Joyce

Captivating guest post by Andrew Joyce on Marie Story‘s blog. He talks about his latest novel, Yellow Hair, and tells us the fascinating creation story of the Dakota, known today as the Sioux…

Story Book Reviews

AndrewMy name is Andrew Joyce and I write books for a living. I would like to thank Marie for allowing me to be here today to promote my latest, Yellow Hair, which documents the injustices done to the Sioux Nation from their first treaty with the United States in 1805 through Wounded Knee in 1890. Every death, murder, battle, and outrage I write about actually took place. The historical figures that play a role in my fact-based tale of fiction were real people and I use their real names. Yellow Hair is an epic tale of adventure, family, love, and hate that spans most of the 19th century.


1yellowhair-800-cover-reveal-and-promotional Now that the commercial is out of the way, we can get down to what I really came here to talk about: the Sioux people. The people we know as the Sioux were originally known as the Dakota, which means…

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Andrew Joyce, Author

I am thrilled to welcome Andrew Joyce as my guest today.

Andrew Joyce

Andrew is a brilliant storyteller whose continuing adventures are kept on a short leash by his canine companion, Danny the Dog.

Danny XXlI read and reviewed Andrew’s Huck Finn trilogy after having devoured each of the three novels. You can find my rave reviews here.  Although, if you go to Andrew’s Amazon page and click on each of his books, you will find them rife with 5-star reviews.  Apparently, I am only one among myriad Andrew Joyce fans!

Andrew is here today to tell us about the journey that inspired him to write his latest book, Yellow Hair.  Welcome, Andrew! It is a pleasure to host you on my blog.

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book-andrew-yellow-hair-2Thank you, Tina. My name is Andrew Joyce and I write books for a living. Tina has been kind enough to allow me a little space on her blog to talk about my latest, Yellow Hair.

Yellow Hair documents the injustices done to the Sioux Nation from their first treaty with the United States in 1805 through Wounded Knee in 1890. Every death, murder, battle, and outrage depicted actually took place—from the first to the last. The historical figures that play a role in my story were real people and I used their real names. I conjured up my protagonist only to weave together the various events conveyed in my fact-based tale of fiction. Yellow Hair is an epic tale of adventure, family, love, and hate that spans most of the 19th century. It is American history.

The inspiration for the book came to me when I was reading a short article and it made reference to the Great Sioux Uprising of 1862. It also mentioned that the outcome involved the largest mass execution in the history of the United States. That piqued my interest.

When I started my research into the incident, one thing led to another and before I knew it, I was documenting the entire history of the Sioux, who are also known as the Dakota, vis-à-vis the relationship between them and the United States.

Because the book exists only because I read the phrase, “the largest mass execution in the history of the United States,” I’ll tell you a little about that. What follows is an extremely abbreviated version of events.

The Dakota signed their first treaty with the United States in 1805 when they sold a small portion of their land to the Americans for the purpose of building forts. It was right after the Louisiana Purchase and President Jefferson wanted a presence in the West. At the time, “the West” was anything on the western side of the Mississippi River.

In the treaty of 1805, the Dakota sold 100,000 acres to the book-andrew-resolutionAmericans. The agreed-upon price was $2.00 per acre. But when the treaty came up before the Senate for ratification, the amount was changed to two cents per acre. That was to be a precursor for all future treaties with the Americans. There were subsequent treaties in 1815, 1825, 1832, 1837, and 1851, and basically the same thing happened with all those treaties.

In 1837, the Americans wanted an additional five million acres of Dakota land. Knowing it would be a hard sell after the way they failed to live up to the letter or spirit of the previous treaties, the government brought twenty-six Dakota chiefs to Washington to show them the might and majesty that was The United States of America.

The government proposed paying one million dollars for the acreage in installments over a twenty-year period. Part of the payment was to be in the form of farm equipment, medicine, and livestock. Intimidated, the Indians signed the treaty and went home. The United States immediately laid claim to the lands—the first payment did not arrive for a year.

The significance of the 1837 treaty lies in the fact that it was the first time “traders” were allowed to lay claim to the Indians’ payments without any proof that money was owed . . . and without consulting the Indians. Monies were subtracted from the imbursements and paid directly to the traders.

By 1851, the Americans wanted to purchase all of the Dakota’s remaining lands—twenty-five million acres. The Sioux did not want to sell, but were forced to do so with threats that the army could be sent in to take the land from them at the point of a gun if they refused the American’s offer.

“If we sell our land, where will we live?” asked the Dakota chief.

book-andrew-molly-lee“We will set aside land for the Dakota only. It is called a reservation and it will be along both banks of the Minnesota River, twenty miles wide, ten on each side and seventy miles long,” answered the Commissioner of Indian Affairs.

The Dakota were offered six cents an acre for land that was worth at least a dollar an acre. The payment would be stretched out over a twenty year period and was to be made in the form of gold coins. One year later, in 1852, the Americans took half the reservation, the seventy miles on the north side of the river. The Dakota were now reduced from a nation of fierce, independent people to a people dependent on hand-outs from the ones who stole not only their land, but also their dignity.

The Dakota were forced to buy their food from the traders who ran trading posts at the Indian Agency the U.S. Government had set up on the reservation. All year long the Dakota would charge what they needed. When the yearly payment for their land arrived, the traders would take what they said was owed them. Subsequently, there was very little gold left for the Dakota.

By 1862, the Dakota were starving. That year’s payment was months late in arriving because of the Civil War. The traders were afraid that because of the war there would be no payment that year and cut off the Dakota’s credit. The Indian Agent had the power to force the traders to release some of the food stocks, but refused when asked to do so by the Dakota.

After they had eaten their ponies and dogs, and their babies cried out in the night from hunger, the Dakota went to war against the United States of America.

They attacked the agency first and liberated the food stock from the book-andrew-redemptionwarehouse, killing many white people who lived there. Then bands of braves set out to loot the farms in the surrounding countryside.

Many whites were killed in the ensuing weeks. However, not all of the Dakota went to war. Many stayed on the reservation and did not pick up arms against their white neighbors. Some saved the lives of white settlers. Still, over 700 hundred whites lost their lives before the rebellion was put down.

When the dust settled, all of the Dakota—including women and children, and those people who had saved settlers’ lives—were made prisoners of war.

Three hundred and ninety-six men were singled out to stand trial before a military commission. They were each tried separately in trials that lasted only minutes. In the end, three hundred and three men were sentenced to death.

Even though he was occupied with the war, President Lincoln got involved. He reviewed all three hundred and three cases and pardoned all but thirty-eight of the prisoners.

On a gray and overcast December morning in 1862, the scaffold stood high. Thirty-eight nooses hung from its crossbeams. The mechanism for springing the thirty-eight trap doors had been tested and retested until it worked perfectly. At exactly noon, a signal was given, a lever pulled, and the largest mass execution to ever take place in the United States of America became part of our history.

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Short bioAndrew Joyce left high school at seventeen to hitchhike throughout the US, Canada, and Mexico. He wouldn’t return from his journey until decades later when he decided to become a writer. Joyce has written five books, including a two-volume collection of one hundred and fifty short stories comprised of his hitching adventures called BEDTIME STORIES FOR GROWN-UPS (as yet unpublished), and his latest novel, YELLOW HAIR. He now lives aboard a boat in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, with his dog, Danny, where he is busy working on his next book, tentatively entitled, MICK REILLY.

Learn more about Andrew:   Website   Blog   Facebook   Twitter   LinkedIn  Amazon   Barnes & Noble   Smashwords   iTunes   Kobo

 

Yellow Hair (Now on Sale)

If you are as big a fan of Andrew Joyce as I am, you’ll be joining the stampede over to Amazon to buy his latest book, Yellow Hair. Andrew breaks from pure fiction and moves into historical fiction, documenting the injustices suffered by the Sioux Nation from 1805-1890 at the hands of the U.S. government. I expect this book to be as riveting as his Huck Finn series…

Andrew Joyce

yellowhair-800-cover-reveal-and-promotional

Yellow Hair documents the injustices done to the Sioux Nation from their first treaty with the United States in 1805 through Wounded Knee in 1890. Every death, murder, battle, and outrage written about actually took place. The historical figures that play a role in this fact-based tale of fiction were real people and the author uses their real names. Yellow Hair is an epic tale of adventure, family, love, and hate that spans most of the 19th century.

This is American history.

Andrew Joyce is the recipient of the 2013 Editor’s Choice Award for Best Western for his novel, Redemption: The Further Adventures of Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01LXOXHBI

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