Welcome to Long Ago & Far Away!

Do you crave historical fiction from off the beaten path? Are you searching for stories set beyond the familiar US and Western Europe settings? Let’s have some fun looking elsewhere! There’s soooo much more elsewhere!

(Future picture of me with my pets. :)

Long Ago & Far Away explores historical fiction set in less commonly portrayed times and places. Those may include the US and Europe but from lessor known corners or periods. Much of the focus will take us to Asia, Africa, the Middle East, the Caribbean, Central and South America — you know, off the beaten path, at least where publishing is concerned. Certainly not for the billions of people who live there!

We will consider the historical fiction genre through discussions of history, art, archaeology, and the writing craft. Rather than formal book/story reviews, this newsletter will include informal responses. These may include observations of connections with other works, or close looks at aspects of history or craft.

Let’s see what we can find!

Why subscribe?

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The newsletter publishing schedule will be uneven for a while but will include:

- Round-ups and discussions of historical fiction and related topics.

- Round-ups and discussions of fascinating history, especially the unusual, the beautiful, the surprising, and things full of wonder.

- Observations made in historical fiction readings.

- It will eventually include short and serialized fiction.

- If I ever dig my art studio out from under the stacks of storage, I will post items related to encaustic painting - an ancient process of painting with wax. When I do so, my visual art will likely spring from Long Ago & Far Away.

Goals of this Stack:

To increase the Substack presence of historical fiction writers and offerings.

Interactions with other HF writers. What can we do together to lift this boat?

If you love reading and/or writing historical fiction set in less familiar contexts, I’d love to hear from you.

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A little about me:

Why Long Ago & Far Away?

I have lived on three continents and traveled in four. I have a BFA in scenery and lighting design for the stage, and a Master of Divinity. My theatre and travel experiences have given me a passion for stories set in faraway places. I’d love to hear from you, learn what you’ve learned and loved in your own journey and what you are reading or writing that explores the Long Ago & Far Away.

What I’m working on:

I am currently writing a novel set in Roman Syria and Sassanid Persia during Late Antiquity.

As such, I’m a low church Protestant stumbling through the world of Late Antique Christianity (with all its liturgical and confessional variations), the earliest days of Islam, and the ancient religion of Zoroastrianism. It is a land of wonder and dramatic change and yet the people struggle with many of the same challenges that we do today. One of my driving questions is: how do regular people navigate a world of geo-political and personal upheaval?

My other interests include Central Asia (The Great Game), the history of tea, the Gilded Age and early Florida. So, you may see those ideas developed along the way.

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A place for historical fiction set off the beaten path.


Lausanne Davis Carpenter

Historical fiction writer, painter, stage designer. Used to travel, now writing instead. Tea obsessed and married with cats (not TO cats, although it sometimes feels like it.)