by Kelly Johnson
Amanda Hughes has always been intrigued with the 18th century – the clothes, the people and the lifestyle.
As a child she imagined living in that time, playing make-believe with characters she created in her mind’s eye.
Today, those characters and that time period are central to the Blaine author’s books.
Hughes has published two books, “Beyond the Cliffs” and “The Pride of the King,” both of the historical adventure, with romance, genre.
“Beyond the Cliffs” was first published some 10 years ago by a Canadian publishing company and was re-released by another publishing company in April.
“The Pride of the King” was published a couple of years ago.
According to Hughes, she did extensive research on the Hinckley fire in 1894, which burned some 200,000 acres. Those events, with the dates and location changed, serve as the climax of “The Pride of the King.”
Such research is common for Hughes, who has to not only make sure historical events are accurately portrayed in her novels, but she also needs to take care to use the appropriate language for the time period.
“I love the research,” Hughes said. “You can’t just use any words when you write a historical novel.”
Paying attention to word detail is something Hughes takes great care to do.
“It’s time consuming, but it’s a labor of love,” she said.
“You want to get it right.”
In fact, studying the time period is something Hughes has always been drawn to.
“I’ve always had a fascination with that time period (the 18th century),” she said.
Hughes said she has been developing ideas for her novels since she was a child, but only began writing some 10 to 15 years ago.
“I write about characters I imagined as a kid,” she said.
She has always had an active imagination, Hughes said.
Hughes also gets a lot of her ideas from reading and watching movies.
Her novels center around “strong women that know how to survive,” Hughes said.
Hughes credits her mother, who wrote poems and short stories, with inspiring her to take up writing.
Hughes started her own writing journey by taking up pencil and paper and reading her finished product to her children.
“They’re a very good help,” she said about her children.
Hughes said she decided to write and publish her own novels because so many of the novels she found focused only on the history or only on the romance.
“I was frustrated,” she said. “I wasn’t finding the books I wanted out here.”
So she decided to write the books she wanted to read.
Currently Hughes is working on her third novel.
Hughes will hold an author meet and greet event Friday, Feb. 11 from 10 a.m. to noon at Caribou, 10400 Baltimore St. N.E., Blaine.
For more information about Hughes, visit www.amandahughesauthor.com.