What I want to do next is to finish the Fergus Findlay, Drover trilogy, then follow Miss Kirkwood through to her retirement and becoming the Cairndhu matriarch. It takes Peggy through the lean thirties and the unthinkable idea of a second European war.
Village tales like Miss Kirkwood’s include so many characters they are a joy to write as the incidents come from just listening to older people talk and laugh about their younger days.
In the meantime, I have a talk o give about the Stuart era, especially the women for the local Historical Society. The Stuarts start off with Marjorie Bruce marrying the Steward of Scotland, both of whom trace their ancestry to Normandy, the Steward to Flaald Fitzalan, not only a Frenchman but, from the Fitz, an illegitimate Frenchman at that; Robert Bruce’s claim to the Scottish throne being based on descent from Margaret Tudor. The Bruce aristocracy, which made that marriage possible, comes via a Normandy Bruce, to a forefather managing to wed the widow of the Earl of Carrick. This forefather having met the Earl of Carrick on Crusade went to visit the Countess and console her over her Crusader husband’s death and the Countess took such a liking to that Bruce that she shut the castle gates and refused to let him leave until he married her. Then we have James Stuart, Mary Queen of Scots’ son, not ‘Darnley’s boy’. The tail end of the Royal line only peters out with Hanovarian George, another son of a female branch, usurping the Old Pretender. The family line ends with Bonnie Prince Charlie’s daughter Charlotte and her son, whose mother was Clementina Walkinshaw – from Glasgow. So many stories that I think I will do it as a series of shorter tales, novellas.