Historical Writer

wikipedia writer

I’m a historical writer and editor, and also the first-ever author to write a book on The Life and Legend of Mississippi Matilda. I was moved by the complexity of Matilda Witherspoon’s journey and the hardships she overcame from childhood onward.

Her rich, deep, moving backstory began in 1914, and the details of her orphaned childhood and transcendent voice were relayed by her daughter Carrie Powell. Matilda became a singer, married the iconic bluesman Eugene Powell (a.k.a. Sonny Boy Nelson), and was the mother of ten beloved children.

It just so happened that I collaborated with the last manager of Eugene, Brian O’Conner, on a series of books regarding this amazing and under-appreciated musical couple.

The book is historic — very little was known of Matilda’s life until the manuscript came to life. It’s in soon-to-be published mode and has companion books as well, one published.

You can read more about this labor of love here and here, But I also wanted to share some notable occurrences after I announced the manuscript was in progress.

Roles as a Historical Writer on Wikipedia

It just so happened that my blog post about the book made its way into Wikipedia. My work is cited on the Mississippi Matilda page and referenced on the Hattiesburg, Mississippi page as well.

I happen to be a Wikipedia editor, but was completely unaware of these entries. That fact is that authors and journalists aren’t notified when their work is cited in Wikipedia, so can be quite a surprise when an entry is discovered.

By the way, I stumbled across Wiki references of interviews with Cheryl Najafi and Lyle Lovett as well, published in a suite of Lifestyles and Homes magazines. The citations appeared in Wikipedia and Wiki 2: Wikipedia Republished as well.

Capturing History

My favorite forms of writing and editing fall in the historic category, whether fiction or nonfiction. I edit manuscripts for authors of the history genre and ghostwrite books as well.

If you need help with your manuscript, I would love to collaborate. Contact me at melaniesaxton@icloud.com and let’s get started!