Molalla resident Cathy Long has published her short story "A Vacation through Time on the Oregon Trail" about a woman, Caitlin, who mysteriously travels back to the 1800s and finds herself in a wagon train on the Oregon Trail.
The historical science-fiction story was about 10 years in the making and is the first work Long has published.
Long was born in Toledo, Oregon and grew up on the Oregon Coast. She worked as a dental assistant for 35 years. She now lives in Molalla and works as a bus driver for First Student.
During her time on the coast, Long worked at Newport Historical Society where she developed her affinity for Oregon history.
"I wanted to get over to Baker to see the wagon tracks and the interpretive center, and when I got over there and saw the area, I kind of started putting the story together," Long said. "And that's where it kind of takes off. I talked about the history going up the gorge, and then the character has a black-out at the history center, and when she wakes up she is actually there on the Oregon Trail."
Long shared the book with her 8-year-old grandson after taking him to visit the National Historic Oregon Trail Interpretive Center in Baker City.
"He was astounded to see the actual size of the wagons and to see the displays and [then] to read it and to feel like he was there in the book," Long said. "It was nice to see his impression as an 8-year-old."
With that, Long hopes to donate books to the school and city libraries for people of all ages to read.
"It's a fun read for any age-level," Long said. "And I hope that whoever reads it will enjoy it."
The book is available in paperback and digital formats on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes and Google Play. Page Publishing is also making the book available for wholesale order through the Ingram Content Network.
Now that she's got one book under her belt, Long isn't wasting any time moving on to another. She's currently working on a second time-travel book that will begin in downtown Portland.
"I kind of like that (time travel)," Long said. "You know, sometimes in your life you feel like you would like to be in another place and another time, and it just kind of appeals to me, shall I say? As long as you can come back. I always want to come back."
No spoilers here, but check out the current book and stay tuned for the next to find out where Long's characters go and if they make it back.
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