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Masterworks: Legacy - Samantha Wilcoxson - Interview

  Today is the last of a series on nine interviews I'm sharing on the Crowvus Book Blog. These are from the authors of the short stories included in the  Masterworks  anthology by the  Historical Writers Forum . We're running through chronologically, some are video interviews, others are written. I am delighted to welcome the fantastic Samantha Wilcoxson, who is sharing the artist inspiration for her short story Legacy , as well as the appeal of James A. Hamilton, and the delights of researching. First of all, tell us a little bit about yourself, what you write (besides Masterworks!), and what inspired you to begin writing. I was inspired to write by my love of reading. After watching me read, write reviews, and keep journals for twenty years, my husband asked me why I didn’t try writing, so I did! Without really planning on it, I ended up writing historical biographical fiction. I’m drawn to a tragic tale but also to lesser known historical figures with emotive stories to tell

#HistFicThursdays - If It's the Last Thing I Do - David Fitz-Gerald - Book Excerpt

 This week for #HistFicThursdays, I'm delighted to once again be teaming up with The Coffee Pot Book Club for author David Fitz-Gerald's blog tour! Today, I'm sharing an excerpt from his brilliant book, If It's the Last Thing I Do!

First of all, let's meet the book...

It's 1975, and Misty Menard unexpectedly inherits her father's business in Lake Placid, New York. It never occurred to her that she could wind up as the CEO of a good old-fashioned manufacturing company.

After years of working for lawyers, Misty knows a few things about the law. Her favorite young attorney is making a name for himself, helping traditionally owned companies become employee owned, using a little-known, newly-passed law. When he offers to help Misty convert Adirondack Dowel into an ESOP, pro bono, Misty jumps at the chance. 

The employees are stunned, the management team becomes hostile, and the Board of Directors is concerned. Misfortune quickly follows the business transformation. A big customer files for bankruptcy. A catastrophic ice jam floods the business. Stagflation freezes the economy. A mysterious shrouded foe plots revenge. Misty's family faces a crisis. The Trustee is convinced something fishy is going on, the appraiser keeps lowering the company's value, and the banker demands additional capital infusions. Misty thought she had left her smoking addiction and alcoholism in the past, but when a worker's finger is severed in an industrial accident, Misty relapses.

Disasters threaten to doom the troubled company. After surviving two world wars and the Great Depression, it breaks Misty's heart to think that she has destroyed her father's company. All she wants is to cement her father's legacy and take care of the people who built the iconic local business. Can a quirky CEO and her loyal band of dedicated employee owners save an heirloom company from foreclosure, repossession, and bankruptcy?

Get your copy of the thrilling If It's the Last Thing I Do now... if it's the last thing you do!

You can buy If It's the Last Thing I do via this Universal Link

And here's an excerpt to whet your appetite:

Stuart, Art, and Doyle promptly took their regular seats and I greeted the team as Joanne stepped into the room. We had been meeting dutifully every Monday for a year, but the gathering still felt as uncomfortable as the first one did. The men didn't argue about whether they should attend the meetings and they didn't discuss whether any value came from our meetings. Instead, they endured them. Whether they had discussed it, or it just turned out that way, one thing they seemed to agree upon was a strategy of running out the clock. It was always up to me to have discussion topics ready, or we would sit in silence waiting for the time to expire.

I thought about all the questions that Benjamin asked me during his valuation interview over a month ago, and that helped me think of new topics to discuss with the group. After each man gave his update and answered my questions, I took a deep breath. I looked at each man for a moment, finally resting my gaze on Doyle. All weekend, I rehearsed the words I would use when we met today.

My eyes closed for a second and I thought of Father. I wish that he were here to witness the gift I was about to bestow upon his workers, in his name. "I've decided to sell the company to the workers. The sale will happen over the course of several years, and the first transaction will happen on Independence Day. I plan to hold a big luncheon on Friday to tell everyone the big news, so I want you to keep it to yourselves until then. Maybe you've never heard of ESOPs, but under a new law, employees can become owners through an Employee Stock Ownership Plan."

Doyle was the first to speak. "What kind of an idiot are you?" Truthfully, the man added an expletive before the word idiot.

Thanks to Art, I didn't have to categorize for Doyle just what sort of an idiot I was. The business manager said, "Why would you go and do a thing like that?"

Stuart's perpetual grin became a guffaw and he slapped his thighs. "Doesn't that beat all? What will you think of next, Misty?"

Doyle added. "That'd be like putting the students in charge of the high school. How can you expect the principal to do his job?"

Art added, "Or putting the prisoners in charge of the jail. What's the warden to do?"

Stuart laughed and held his sides like it hurt to have to laugh so hard. "Oh, or like opening all the cages at the zoo and expecting the animals not to eat each other." I looked at the sales manager and imagined a lion chewing on his carcass.

Doyle said, "Next thing you know it, Misty'll want everyone to sit around in a meeting, holding hands, and singing songs."

Stuart began singing, "I'd like to Teach the World to Sing (In Perfect Harmony)." I smiled at the thought and the five-year-old song played in my head.

The door between the factory and the office swung open and Millie shouted, "Come quickly. There's been a terrible accident. Call an ambulance."

 Now, let's meet the author:

David Fitz-Gerald writes historical fiction in his spare time, with the hope of transporting readers to another time and place.

If It's the Last Thing I Do is his 7th novel.

Dave has worked for more than 30 years as an accountant, employee owner, and member of the management team at a "silver" ESOP (employee-owned) company. He has championed the cause in national, non-profit association leadership roles.

Dave’s family roots run deep in the Adirondacks, going back generations. He attended college and worked at a deli in Saranac Lake during the 1980s. He spent two summers as an elf at Santa’s Workshop on Whiteface Mountain in the 1970s and is an Adirondack 46-er, which means he has hiked all of New York’s highest peaks.

You can find David on these links:

To follow the rest of the If It's the Last Thing I Do tour, click on the banner below:


  1. Thanks so much for hosting David Fitz-Gerald today on your fabulous blog.

    Cathie xx
    The Coffee Pot Book Club

  2. Thank you so much for featuring If It's the Last Thing I Do on #histficthursdays

    All the best,


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