The United States is at the beginning of a long, drawn-out, hysterically frantic election process that usually covers an entire year, gazillions of dollars, and more hyperbole than you’ll find in an entire series of fiction. So when I escape to 1830 to write about my scientific Ives family and my psychic Malcolms, what does my Muse choose to plot? An election.
I may end up killing my characters first, or throwing out the entire plot. Only time will tell. But in the meantime, I sketched up this lovely draft based on the interesting reform happening in 1830 England. I read about the various boroughs holding elections over a summer after the death of King George IV, when the new King asked for a new Parliament. Elections back then were nothing like those today. At the time, many aristocrats controlled “pocket” boroughs, some with as few as five voters. In other areas, the local landowner might buy a few rounds at the tavern and tell his tenants for whom to cast their votes—all very polite and leisurely and ruled by aristocrats, even though the Commons was supposed to be for the common man, right?