The Month the Babies Cry . . . A New Novel by Rickey Pittman, Bard of the South

A Preface

Each week, I intend to publish on this blog at least one chapter of my new novel, The Month the Babies Cry. I’ve researched and worked on it for several years. When it is complete, I’ll get it into print form, though certainly there will be many revisions by that time. The novel is set in the last two years of the War Between the States. The point of view is rigidly Southern and Texan. Texans in the mid-nineteenth century were a tough breed of people, who settled, ranched, farmed, raised families in North and West Texas. Too many of them died there. Micah and the other characters of my novel faced extreme difficulties, not only from the war that pulled 90,000 Texans into the Confederate Army, but from the wars with the Comanche and Kiowa. If you stroll through the graveyards of Jack, Wise, Hood and other counties, you will see many tombstones of men, women, and children who were killed by Comanche and Kiowa raiders. I have studied the Native Americans of Texas extensively and tried to be accurate and fair in presenting them, but the reader will not find the portrait of the media’s Noble Savage in the novel.  From the Texan point of view, the Comanches and Kiowa  were just savages. Though the early Texans were not without fault and transgression, the hate they felt for the Comanches and Kiowa had some justification. I hope to capture the heart, feelings, and thoughts of these frontier Texans. I love Texas and am proud to be a native Texan. My ancestors on my father’s side were some of these early settlers that I chose to write about.

The title of the novel, The Month the Babies Cry, comes from the Comanche word for February, which according to my research means, “The Month the Babies Cry.”  Obviously, this is a hint that some key events happen in February. I hope to also have completed a study guide, a list of resources, and glossary for the novel by the time the complete printed version is published.

I want to extend my personal thanks to Billy Dunn, my writing mentor. He is the one who most helped me begin my writing journey many years ago. Thank you, reader,  for beginning this Texas journey with me. Now, let’s step into, The Month the Babies Cry.