Yesterday, we launched our brand new web site with a new design and a new name! Doesn't it look amazing? Again, thanks to Matt Jones with Jones House Creative for our fantastic banner.
To go along with this launch, we are having a series of giveaways hosted by various authors over the course of the next few weeks. All you need to do is follow the instructions in each post to be entered for your chance to win.
Since I just had my newest book release in August, I'm giving away a FREE autographed copy of A Grand Design to one lucky winner. Just answer one of the questions at the bottom of this post and place your answer in the comments, and you're entered to win. That's it!
** Oh, and my book isn't the only one being given away this week. So, leave comments every day on every post this week. The more posts on which you leave a comment, the more chances you'll have to win.
Here's a blurb about the book for those who don't like being surprised. :)
Fifteen years ago, Alyssa Denham stopped taking her annual summer trip to Mackinac Island, refusing to tell anyone the reason she avoided the island she loved as a child. Now here she is, unexpectedly on the island for two weeks with her best friend, Libby, trying to keep her secret buried. Alyssa’s grandmother, who lives on the island, has asked Alyssa and Libby to help piece together a friendship quilt she had started years earlier. Their quest takes them to the homes of some of her grandmother’s long-lost friends, giving Alyssa amazing insight into her grandmother’s life…and attracting the attention of the handsome Scott Whitman. Will memories of her past keep Alyssa from letting go? Or will she finally learn to trust and let God heal her fractured heart?
And now back to your regularly scheduled blog post:
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When we think of the old west, the cowboy immediately comes to mind, but he wasn’t the only type of man to swarm across the plains and into the mountains in search of steady work.
The hearty loggers came in droves and lived a lifestyle uniquely their own. I have pages and pages of details about these men from the research I’ve done for some ideas on books set in the 1880’s about lumberjacks. There is no way I could share all of this with you in one blog, so I’ll just hit the highlights.
Man is either dominated *by* the forest or he *dominates* the forest. The lumberjack knew this very well and quickly gained a respect for the woods or else he died. He faced danger from sunup to sundown six days a week, and his instinct for survival never slept. Even at rest, every muscle and nerve remained alert.
At the end of each day, two dozen “shanty boys” lived in a single log cabin, and fights broke out nightly over something as insignificant as someone else’s socks laying on the floor in front of a man’s bunk. The fights were squelched as quickly as they started by the other men because fighting was outlawed by the Timber Boss. A man might not only lose his pay, but his job as well, for fighting, drinking, or reveling with women of the sordid type. These weren’t allowed in camp—ever.
So, on Saturday night after supper, the lumber camp quickly emptied as the men made their way to the nearest town to let off the “charge of gunpowder” they’d held inside for six days.
Whenever a lumber camp was situated near a town, the houses of ill repute relocated to the end of the skid road, the trail built by the lumberjacks that contained logs at ten-foot intervals down the road for the ease of being able to skid their logs down to the mill yard.
It didn’t take long for these saloons and soiled doves, women of bad reputation, to become known as "skid row." The name has stuck to this day as a description of a bawdy place in any town, but it originated with the loggers.
The lumberjacks too lived by an unwritten “code” that said no man could offend, insult, or molest a woman or speak lightly of a woman of good reputation. By the code, women and children were helpless and always safe when woodsmen were around.
It didn’t take long for gamblers to infiltrate the camps, taking jobs for a time to size up the crew and find out how much money they had. Lumber camps were ripe with men unable to spend their money throughout the week and they easily fell victim to the gamblers’ games.
The camps were one of the least discriminating places in the west. Without blinking an eye, they hired men from all backgrounds and nationalities. These men worked hard from the moment the whistle belted out “Daylight in the Swamp” at dawn’s first light to “Gabriel Time” calling them in to supper. They gulped their meals in less than ten minutes, because there wasn’t much time left before their nine o’clock bedtime.
You may think the life of the early lumberjack to have been very harsh and restrictive, and they were, but the Timber Bosses paid them a dollar a day and higher, and competed with other logging camps by offering better and more food, better bunks, thicker blankets, and other perks in order to attract hard-working men to their camp.
The lumberjacks quickly found this out and soon got the reputation of being persnickety over something like rancid butter or over-cooked flapjacks. They nailed the offending victuals to the cookhouse door and walked off the job in search of a camp with better food, leaving the Timber Bosses scrambling to move men into different teams in order to keep up with their eight to ten-thousand board feet per day goals and deadlines.
Now it's YOUR turn:
- Have you read any books or seen any movies where the lumberjack is a prominent character? What is the title of the book or name of the movie?
- Would you read a series or even a single book if a lumberjack was the hero? Why or why not?
- Did any of the above change your view or knowledge of the lumberjack? What was it?
** I'll announce the winner from the drawing in the comments once the winner has been selected. And the name will also go in the right sidebar of our blog.
Tiffany Amber Stockton has been crafting and embellishing stories since childhood. Today, she is an award-winning author and speaker who has partnered with Nerium International in the anti-aging skin care industry, helping others look younger and live better. She lives with her husband and fellow author, Stuart Vaughn Stockton, in Colorado. They have one girl and one boy, an Aussie/retriever mix named Roxie and and Australian cattle dog/Corgi mix named Timber. She has sold fourteen books so far and is represented by agent Sandra Bishop. You can also find her on Facebook and Twitter. a Rafflecopter giveaway