Welcome!

Welcome to my new website, obviously very much a work in progress.

I’m thrilled and excited that my historical novel, I AM LIVIA, will be published in April 2014.  A taste of the opening chapter:

I wonder sometimes how I will be remembered.  As mother of my country, as men call me to my face, or as a monster?  I know the rumors none dare speak aloud.  Some believe I am a murderess many times over.  They envy me and they hate my power.  In Rome, a woman’s power, however circumspectly exercised, arouses revulsion.

 

Every death in my family circle has been laid at my door.  People claim I am adept in the use of poisons.  Oh, I have transgressed.  But not in the way they think.  It is when I remember my youth that I find myself recoiling.  Do I recoil when I think of him, my beloved?  No.  But I paid a price in my soul, for loving him.

 

Old age can be a deceiver.  My knees ache when I walk, but if I sit still, I do not feel so different from the girl I was.  I tell myself I am the same.  Then I glance down at my hands resting on the saffron folds of my stola, and I see blue veins under skin that is almost translucent.  I cannot evade physical reality.  And yet I believe I remain, in some essential way, the person I was at fifteen or twenty.  Today I am called by the honorific Julia Augusta, but inside of me the girl Livia Drusilla still lives.  Certainly, the decisions that girl made long ago shaped who I am now. 

 

The time is approaching when I must move aside to make room for other guests at the banquet of life.  It is necessary that I prepare to explain myself before the gods.  Above all, I must be ready to account for the young woman I was. 

 

My beloved wrote a record of his deeds for others to read.  Of course he obscured distasteful truths.  But I will write the story of my youth in a cipher only I know.  I will be honest.  There is no point in lying to the gods. 

 

It will take courage to remember the days when I was Livia Drusilla.  I wonder if I can do it without flinching.