You got the shining, Danny. You know things. So do I.

I love when connections make themselves known. The unexplained becomes explained. It happens a great deal to me, and for the most part, it is such a delight. Many of my friends and family will tell I have this “knowing.” It’s the only way I can explain it. It’s almost like the shining Danny has in the book, except I can’t communicate with people using my mind. Yet.

It’s really more of a genetic memory, this knowing. As I have explored my ancestry, I’ve discovered a great deal of the passions I have in this life parallel the people in my family tree. An example would be, I’ve always been attracted to Mary, Queen of Scots. She’s always been a favorite. Turns out, I’m a part of Clan Stewart, who would produce Mary. Things like that.

Today I was researching Clan Irvine, another clan I belong to when I pulled up this book on Google. I see the name Irvine. Irvines in Georgia. Makes sense. I see a list of family names in which Irvine is connected to, and I pause. Did I really just see what I thought I saw?


It was right there.


The name I gave the town in my novel. Now, I knew it was a last name. I named the town after Charlotte Dacre because I love her gothic horror so much. Zofloya is incredible. Simply genius. But I had to develop a backstory for the name, and it wasn’t Charlotte. The town was named after a local stream where the moonshiners set up their still. The stream was Day Creek, and since everyone in town was basically Scottish or Welsh, they ran the words together to create Dacre, pronounced day-cree. Sounds like a solid backstory.

I really didn’t think anything on it.

Until today.

I dug a bit further to find out where Dacre came from. England. Okay, I could see a tie to that. I’m not terribly English, but there were some English family members. Dig a bit more, and I find the Dacres dancing around members of my family tree. How did I not know this?

Then it happened.

I’m related to the wife of the 7th Baron Dacre. There was the connection. The reason why I was so attracted to the name. Why it’s been so important to me. I’m sure if I really dig, I am probably directly related, but I’m happy with this.

Dacre is in my blood. I knew from the moment I decided to name the town Dacre it was the right decision. Now I understand why. The knowing was there, I just didn’t realize that the reason was beyond Charlotte.

Oh, I wonder if I can find a connection to Charlotte? Could she be in my tree too? We’ll see. Either way, if there is something you just know but can’t explain, you’re not alone. Follow that knowing. Let it guide you, because it is rarely wrong, and when you do find the reason, it’s usually so deep and meaningful, it will give you a deeper appreciation for the connection. This makes me appreciate Dacre even more, because I know I didn’t just come up with a name to come up with a name. I came up with a name which does have meaning for me and considering my novel’s major theme is family, this discovery is even more pertinent.

It’s just so awesome.

Until next time…


The Mess We’re In is available at Amazon, Amazon Kindle, Barnes & Noble, and Books-a-Million.

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