Lessons I learned from Gracie Ingraham, Time Traveler by Christine Potter – Guest Blog and Giveaway

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Lessons I learned from Gracie Ingraham, Time Traveler

There’s something kind of magic about the process of writing. All writers know this. When you’re hard at work writing—in flow, as they say—the world goes away, and a movie starts playing somewhere in your brain. Sometimes you don’t even feel your fingers on the computer keys. The story just…happens.

Of course, it comes from you. You are making it up. Those characters—the villain, the heroine, the funny minor character you’re a little too in love with—they’re all you. It’s hard to remember that sometimes.

So what could an old babe like me learn from a high school sophomore from 1962 suddenly transported in time to 2018 because her time-traveling parents were trying to keep her safe from a possible nuclear holocaust? Quite a bit, it turns out. Let me count out the lessons!

1. Fear is the real enemy. Gracie Ingraham’s parents are Travelers—people who can will themselves back in time to visit bygone eras. Turns out there are two kinds of people in the world: Travelers and folks who are stuck in their own time period. I guess it’s like Muggles and Wizards, sort of. Travelers have some special responsibilities: no time travel for personal gain. No messing with the past. And no going to the future. Because they are afraid that there will be a nuclear war, the Ingrahams try to hide their daughter Grace in the past—the late 1800’s to be exact. Bad idea. Stuff born out of fear almost never works out.

2. Sometimes the big rules are made to be broken. But you have to have a darn good reason to do so. Gracie ends up going the wrong way when she attempts her first trip in time. She goes forward, to the future. There’s a reason for that and it’s not at all selfish and no spoilers. Read the book if you want to know more!

3. When in doubt, listen and observe carefully. People tend to talk too much and it keeps them from learning everything they can about the world around them. Say you’re a high school sophomore who barely even knows how to work a transistor radio trying to pretend she’s had an iPhone since she was nine. Having good observational skills can help you keep your most important secret: that you are a time traveler. If you keep your mouth shut and look interested, people will almost always tell you what you just need to know.

4. There are worse things than being lost. Gracie spends most of this book lost in time. And yet she’s never really alone. The people she needs show up for her. It’s just a question of her trusting them–and trusting herself. My new mantra, taken up after I finished writing this book: It’ll be okay.

I hope Gracie’s Time teaches you a few things you didn’t expect, too! Thanks for dropping by Long and Short Reviews today.

October, 1962
It’s almost Halloween, but something a lot scarier than ghosts is on everyone’s mind: nuclear war. After President Kennedy’s speech to the nation about the Cuban Missile Crisis, Grace Ingraham overhears her parents’ plans to keep her safe. She’ll be sent off to live with a wealthy uncle—in the nineteenth century.

Gracie’s from a family of Travelers, people who can escape into time. Too bad her mom and dad haven’t Traveled since their honeymoon trip to the Lincoln Inauguration. So Grace will have to go alone—even though taking a wrong turn can have serious consequences: like heading for 1890, and ending up …in 2018.

Enjoy an Excerpt

I heard a snoring sound in the sky then, but it was only a plane. For a moment I thought about how terrible it would be if a nuclear war started right that minute, before I could escape to the past. Then I thought about Mom and Dad. I hoped they’d come get me from the 1890s if there weren’t a war. I didn’t want them to die. I didn’t want anyone to die. I really wanted there to be a future.

Mr. Mahoney and I walked past the train station and out onto the empty platform. He looked over his shoulder to be sure no one was around. “Are you ready?” He took my hands, squeezed them, and then he let go. “It’s the right time and place! Go on back, Gracie!”

At first, I thought nothing had happened, except then it wasn’t evening anymore. It was morning—and certainly not the 1890s. Nobody named Augustus introduced himself to me.

Dad always told me that if you get confused when you Travel, you should always look at what kind of lights there are in buildings and what clothing people have on to help place yourself. But what I saw only confused me more.

A freezing wind came off the river and cut right through my corduroy jacket. People in puffy grey and brown overcoats stood in clumps, staring at what I first thought were really tiny transistor radios. I learned that same day those things are called smart phones. I’d missed the 1890s by over a hundred years—and in the wrong direction.

A sleek, silvery train roared into the station from the north and everyone got on it but me. Bingo, the future! I’d just broken one of the biggest Rules there is.

About the Author: Christine Potter lives in a very old, haunted house, not far from Sleepy Hollow. She’s the author of the time-traveling Bean Books series, on Evernight Teen: Time Runs Away With Her, In Her Own Time, What Time Is It There? and Gracie’s Time. She’s also a poet, with several books in print (the most recent is called Unforgetting). Christine loves all kinds of music, DJ’s, and plays dulcimer and guitar.

Website | Amazon Author Page | Facebook | Bean Books Facebook

Buy the book at Amazon, Evernight Teen, or Smashwords.

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  1. Thanks for hosting!

  2. James Robert says

    Thank you so much for taking time to bring to our attention another great read.   I appreciate it and thank you also for the giveaway. 

  3. Audrey Stewart says

    I am so excited to get these books. I can’t wait to read the Bean Book Series.

  4. sounds so good!

  5. Greetings, everyone! Pleased to meet you, Edye! Glad you like my premise! Good to see you, too, Audrey! And there’s the early-rising James! Thanks for having me here at LAS. I love this site, and it’s a pleasure to be here.

  6. Sounds like a good read.

  7. Great post – thanks for sharing!

  8. Good to see you here, Rita and Victoria! Anyone got big plans for the weekend? Everyone planning on staying in her own time period?

  9. Bea LaRocca says

    Good evening. My question for you tonight is, which type of character do you enjoy the most in a story? The hero, the villain or someone who is a little bit of both?

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