Uther Pendragon: Blog


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I try not to post during Holy Week, the time from Palm Sunday to Easter.

This year, the serials concluded a week before that, and the only short piece I had finished in inventory was Yeti's Day. So, nothing from me next week, and only that story this week.

The serials will resume the 22nd, though. Bill and Carolyn Pierce will be back in their Marriage of Inconvenience.

Error corrected

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An alert reader of Getting a Room -- privacy concerns prevent my naming him -- noted that I had Bill & Carolyn using a McDonald's that Evanston didn't have then. He looked it up, and the franchise did not even exist yet. I've changed it to a totally-fictitious firm. Why it's OK to have a fictitious firm but not a firm not yet operating is something I can't explain, but I feel it quite deeply. If you're in the middle of reading the story, some of the later parts will feel a little strange.

It’s all there

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I've read some comments from people who are reluctant to start a serial because they fear that it won't be concluded.

Well, both parts of Honey Bee are on the site, If I'm hit by a truck tomorrow, it will still roll onto your screen a chapter of each story a week. While an author can post as many chapters as he wishes if they are all going to appear the same day, he can't post a chapter which will appear later than the first until the first is available for viewing.

Honey Bee

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Honey Bee is the first-written story of the God Joined Together universe and the first occurring in story time. The story is set in the early 1960s.

We meet Craig and Sandy as teens. Their fellow characters will only meet them as adults.

Real-life background for "The General's Store."

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When you're writing a fictional story that involves some real people, it is only fair to say which they are. I've appended a short justification of the process of the war after Gettysburg as I have imagined it.

These are real people. Most activities, thoughts, or words I attribute to them, of course, are fictional.

USA = United States of America. CSA = Confederate States of America. The positions I list are the positions in real history.

Lee, Robert E., General, CSA

Meade, George Gordon, Major General, USA

Lincoln, Abraham, President, USA

Pickett, George E., Major General, CSA

Hunt, Henry J., Major General, USA

Grant, Ulysses Simpson, Lieutenant General, USA

Banks, Nathaniel P., Major General, USA

Davis, Jefferson, President, CSA

Rosecrans, William S., Major General, USA

Burnside, Ambrose E., Major General, USA

Bragg, Braxton, Lieutenant General, CSA

Johnston, Joseph E., General, CSA

Sherman, William Tecumseh, Major General, USA

Booth, John Wilkes, noted actor, assassin of Lincoln

Chase, Simon P., Secretary of Treasury (and other notable positions), USA

Wade, Benjamin, Senator from Ohio, USA

Hamlin, Hannibal, Vice President, USA

Farragut, David Glasgow, Admiral, USA

Forrest, Nathan Bedford, Major General, CSA

Stephens, Alexander H., Vice President, CSA

The US Army had fought the Mexican War with no unit larger than a brigade. Both Confederate and US armies began the war with the same organization. Divisions and corps came later.

While the CSA promoted 5 men to full general -- and others to lieutenant general -- early in the war, the USA only promoted one man to lieutenant general, Grant after July 1863.


Richmond could not be held without Petersburg; The food was coming in through the smaller town, and precious little food even then. I figure that with the much smaller army that Davis could supply those forces with the Army of Northern Virginia captured, they would try to hold each city. That would mean the capture of Petersburg and the fall of both.

Montgomery had been the first capital, and a quite unsatisfactory one, too. I don't think that they had much choice but to return. Montgomery has one advantage; it is so deep in the Confederacy's interior that supplying a siege from north of the city would have put the Union army at the mercy of guerrilla raiders for a thousand miles. Taking Mobile first is obvious.

Just what Grant was doing between taking Chattanooga and taking Selma, I do not pretend to imagine.

In general, I have the Union doing after the fall of Richmond, mostly what they did in our history, but doing it earlier. That's not particularly likely; the situation being different, they would have seen opportunities in different places.

On the other hand, it is probably the most likely situation that a fiction-writer can imagine. Then too, I can get description of those places then, and Civil-War buffs will recognize those names.


The Civil War was fought with what the modern military would think of as a very-compressed command structure at the lower levels. A regiment would contain 10 companies, 12 for cavalry, and a company started out with 100 men. There were no squads, platoons, or battalions. (A Civil-War "battalion" was a unit organized like a regiment but with not enough companies.)