Historical Fiction

All posts in the Historical Fiction category

6 January 2023

Published January 4, 2023 by rochellewisoff

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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit. 

PHOTO PROMPT © Roger Bultot

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Due to circumstances beyound my control I”m posting a rerun from four years ago. A few of you might remember it .

Genre: HIstorical Fiction
Word Count: 100

THIS HOT MADNESS

Benjamin shoved a notebook under his son’s nose. “What is this mishegoss?”

Although the boy had expected his father’s wrath, he trembled. “They’re my stories, Papa. I’ve decided to become a writer.”  

“A sixteen-year-old child decides?” Benjamin shook his fist and thundered. “For this we send you to yeshiva?”

“I make straight A’s in Talmud class. Why can’t a rabbi write fiction, too?” 

Benjamin flung the binder to the floor. “Frivolous nonsense!” Pages scattered like dry leaves.

***

In 1967, thirty-eight-year-old Chaim Potok marveled when his debut novel, The Chosen, became a NY Times best seller. “What would Papa say now?”

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If you have 4 extra minutes and want to know more, CLICK HERE

30 December 2022

Published December 28, 2022 by rochellewisoff

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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit.

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

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This year has zipped by and now we are ready to take the final Friday Fictioneers challenge…of the year. 😉 To find my story I did a Google search of famous people born on the first of January. This is where it led me.

Genre: Historical Fiction
Word Count: 100

TRUE CHARITY

In our home in Jerusalem, we celebrated holidays according to the lunar calendar. Rosh HaShana, which fell in autumn, was the beginning of our new year. However, my grandfather raised a glass of champagne every January 1st.

            “To Chiune Sugihara, a true hero.”

            “What did he do, Saba?” I asked.

            “What did he do? Funny you should ask.” Saba’s eyes misted. “Mr. Sugihara was the Japanese consul in Lithuania. He issued visas to some 6000 Jews. Thanks to him we escaped the Nazis.”

“Why do always you toast him on January 1st?”

“To wish him a happy birthday, of course.”

CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE

Should you have 11 minutes to spare CLICK to watch a worthwhile video about this man. You won’t regret it.

16 December 2022

Published December 14, 2022 by rochellewisoff

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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit.

PHOTO PROMPT © Lisa Fox

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Genre: Historical Fiction
Word Count: 100

BEAR 55PB

“What do you think, Tante Margarete?” Richard Steiff held up a stuffed bear. “His arms and legs move. He’s soft and cuddly mohair.”

Richard’s creative aunt who’d been paralyzed by polio as a toddler had against all odds, founded Steiff Manufacturing in 1880. Her felt elephants and other animals were favorites of thousands of German children.

She took the bear in her arms. “He is darling. But will he sell?”

“May I enter him in the Leipzig toy trade fair?”

“Viel Glück.”

Margarete’s question was answered in 1903 when an American trader ordered 3,000 bears and renamed them Teddy Bear.  

*viel glück – good luck in German

Conflicting stories abound when it comes to the Teddy Bear named for President Theodore Roosevelt. This one seems feesible to me. CLICK HERE to learn more about this remarkable woman.

CLICK HERE if you’d like to read the other side of the Teddy Bear’s history. I don’t propose to know which story is true. One thing is for sure and certain and that’s the popularity of the Teddy bear.

9 December 2022

Published December 7, 2022 by rochellewisoff

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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit.

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

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81 years ago today, December 7, 1941, the Japanese launched a surprise attack on Pearl Harbor. President Franklin D. Roosevelt proclaimed it a “date which will live in infamy.”

Genre: Historical Fiction
Word Count: 100

Click below to hear the author (me 😉 ) read:

HAVE YOURSELF A MERRY LITTLE CHRISTMAS

A few flakes floated by the window and colored lights reflected in the glass. Dennis Day sang a romantic tune on the radio. Laura sipped hot chocolate and read Fred’s letter at least a tenth time since it arrived Friday.

“November 26, 1941

My dearest,

Happy Thanksgiving from the USS Arizona! I sure do miss your cooking. I swear our gravy was mixed with fuel oil.

I hope my presents get there on time. You’d love Hawaii. The flowers. The beaches. But, golly, it won’t seem like Christmas without snow and my best girl.

“Ladies and gentleman, a special announcement…”

*No, it wasn’t happy news. There were a total of  2,335 military personnel killed, including 2,008 navy personnel, 109 marines, and 218 army. Added to this were 68 civilians, making the total 2403 people dead. 1,177 were from the USS Arizona.

11 November 2022

Published November 9, 2022 by rochellewisoff

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PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

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As we open this Wednesday, November 9, it is 86 year to the day since the violent Kristallnacht. This week I honor the often forgotten victims of the Holocaust.

Genre: Historical Fiction
Word Count: 100

AMIDST THE SHADOWS

My parents met in a displaced persons camp after the liberation. Each of them had lost both a spouse and a daughter. Finding solace in each other’s arms, I think they married more for convenience than love.

Born in 1949, they named me Sarah-Elisheva after their slain children.

One morning when I was ten, I made breakfast.

“What’s wrong with you?” Dad grimaced. “My Elisheva never burned the toast.”

“I’m not Elisheva. I’m not Sarah! I’m me!

He flew into a rage and slapped me. Mom screamed.

Obscured by my sisters’ memories, Auschwitz will forever be tattooed into my soul.

4 November 2022

Published November 2, 2022 by rochellewisoff
Another Hightway

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PHOTO PROMPT © Brenda Cox

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November 9–10, 1938, Nazi leaders unleashed a series of pogroms against the Jewish population in Germany and recently incorporated territories. This event became known as Kristallnacht (The Night of Broken Glass) because of the shattered glass that littered the streets after the vandalism and destruction of Jewish-owned businesses, synagogues, and homes. This was only the beginning of one of the most barbaric and vicious times in recent history.

We say “never again.” But...

Genre: Historical Fiction
Word Count: 100

THE SPIRIT NEVER DIES

With eyes that pierced her soul, Dr. Mengele told 16-year-old Edith, “You’ll see your mother soon. She’s just going to take a shower.”

            That same evening, he forced her to dance for him.

            For decades she grappled with guilt. “Why me? Why did I live?”

            When her patients, Vietnam veterans, would ask her the same question she realized, as a clinical psychologist, she’d never found the answer for herself.

            In 1990 she returned to Auschwitz where she allowed her mother’s final words to heal her soul. “No one can take away from you what you put in your own mind.”

If you have a few minutes to spare, you can listen to Dr. Eger’s story in her own words. HERE

***

HAPPY NEWS!

My work in progress, LAST DANCE WITH ANNIE, is under contract with Ozark Hollow Press!

Short Summary

Elise, a military spouse and mom in the throes of midlife, dances three times a day with the most relentless partner, her secret nemesis she’s nicknamed “Annie Wrecks-Ya.” Will Elise’s strive for perfection kill her, or will she learn to let go and face the truth: she’s an addict. At the same time, her devoted husband Tony feels helpless to save her as he battles demons of his own that followed him home from war.

Can Elise and Tony join forces and defeat these threats to their lives and their marriage? And can Elise learn to dance again, this time with the carefree joy she experienced as a child.

28 October 2022

Published October 26, 2022 by rochellewisoff

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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit.

PHOTO PROMPT © Bill Reynolds

Genre: Historical Fiction
Word Count: 100

DEFINING MOMENT

The signs posted by neighboring farmers declared in bold letters, “Don’t buy Max’s milk. He loves the Hippies.”

The son of a Jewish immigrant from Minsk, Max’s anger burned as he read the words. “My father came to this free country to escape such nonsense and hatred. It’s my land and I’ll rent to whomever I please.”

According to a close friend, Max traveled to Israel in 1971 where he met David Ben Gurion.

Max told the retired prime minister, “I’m Max Yasgur from Bethel, New York.”

To which Ben Gurion responded, “Oh yeah, that’s where Woodstock was, wasn’t it?”

Instead of the 75,000 expected, it’s estimated that 450,000 came to the 3 day festival that turned into 4.

And if you have the time…

23 September 2022

Published September 21, 2022 by rochellewisoff

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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit.

PHOTO PROMPT © Alicia Jamtaas

Genre: Historical Fiction
Word Count: 100

THE MEASURE OF A LIFE

“The space was no bigger than a closet,” said Hannah. “Only room for six of us to hide at once.”

“Were you scared, Bubbie?” asked eleven-year-old Corrie.

“Oy! So scared! I had claustrophobia. But as much as small spaces scared me, the Gestapo scared me more.”

“Did you have to stay there for hours at a time?”

“Only when the family had—visitors. Other times we children were free to play and sing. We even celebrated Hanukkah with potato latkes and presents. The Ten-Booms, such wonderful people.”

“I’m named after Corrie Ten-Boom, aren’t I?”

Ja. May her memory be blessed.”

To learn about this very special lady and her family CLICK HERE

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This past week I’ve finally gotten around to opening an Etsy shop to market my note cards. Please CLICK HERE to come by and browse. There are many more entries to upload before it the shop’s “complete.” 😉

9 September 2022

Published September 7, 2022 by rochellewisoff

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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit.

PHOTO PROMPT © LIsa Fox

Genre: Historical Fiction
Word Count: 100

1938

“Is this how you remember it, Mom?” asked Ruth.

Naomi hadn’t seen the scenic deutsche Stadt in fifty years. The synagogue had been replaced by a church. Although some shops still existed, her childhood home did not.

She swallowed. “I was ten. Momma gave me a sack of her homemade macaroons for the long journey. She told me, ‘You’ll be safe with Aunt Gertie and Uncle Norman in New York.’

“Poppa crushed me in his strong arms. ‘Momma and I will come for you soon. You’ll see.’

“From the ship I watched them grow smaller and smaller.

“They never came.”

26 August 2022

Published August 24, 2022 by rochellewisoff

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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit.

PHOTO PROMPT © Brenda Cox

Genre: Historical Fiction
Word Count: 100

POLITICALLY INCORRECT

“You’re opening a Chinese restaurant, Pop?” Noriyuki looked up from his homework. “But we’re Japanese.”

“The camps certainly taught me that.”  Tamaru shrugged. “Chinese. Japanese. We all look alike to them. Let’s go to the movies.”

Noriyuki stretched his legs. After spending his childhood in a body cast with no hope of healing, he relished a walk to—anywhere.

On December 7, 1966, stand-up comic, Pat Noriyuki Morita, sweat running down his back, said, “Before I begin, I just want to say I’m sorry for messing up your harbor.”

After a moment of thick silence, the audience burst into laughter. 

*Once billed as the Hip Nip, Pat Morita appeared in movies and television. You may remember him as Mr. Miyagi in The Karate Kid or as Arnold Takahashi on Happy Days. As a child he was diagnosed with spinal TB. The doctors gave him little hope of ever walking. Alas after a procedure restored his legs, he was taken from hospital to a Japanese internment camp.

*As for the photo, I believe that food court is Korean. 😉

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