Monday, June 15, 2015

Daughters of the Roaring Twenties

Significant changes during the 1920’s brought about a new breed of women. The 19th Amendment guaranteed the right to vote, and opportunities to attend colleges and to pursue careers paved the way for younger women to embrace who they were. The increased availability of birth control made it possible to plan for children, and new technology brought freedom from the drudgeries of house work with electric refrigerators, washing machines, and vacuum cleaners. 

People from coast to coast had access to the same merchandise thanks to chain stores, and new transportation opportunities allowed long distance traveling. Ford vowed to build a car that all Americans could afford—a Model T cost $260 in 1924—and dozens of other car manufactures grew from the demand for more options. By 1929 there was one car on the road for every five Americans and new business like gas stations and motels lined the roadways. Radios became a must have and radio stations popped up across the nation bringing the news as it happened and entertainment, mainly music, right into homes. Movie theatres and amusement parks also became popular businesses in large cities and small towns alike.  

There was also Prohibition—the 18th Amendment had been ratified in 1919 and on January 16, 1920 at 12:00 AM the federal Volstead Act closed every saloon, bar, and tavern in the United States. The act made it illegal to manufacture and sell any alcoholic beverage. However, consumption of alcohol was not illegal. The liquor trade went underground and bootleggers, gangsters, and racketeers soon battled amongst themselves to control the wealth gained by this enterprising opportunity. Speakeasies were born and embraced.

Because of the time lapse from the ratification and the actual ban on alcohol, many people and business stockpiled liquor, and others started brewing their own, some of which grew in popularity not only across the nation, but the world.

I used all of these significant changes while writing a series of four books, about four sisters and their bootlegging father. Here’s the blurb for the Daughters of the Roaring Twenties series: 

Prohibition has made Roger Nightingale a wealthy man. With his bootlegging business in full swing, and his swanky hotel the most popular joint in town, his greatest challenge is keeping his four willful daughters in check!

Join Ginger, Norma Rose, Twyla and Josie as they foxtrot their way into four gorgeous men’s hearts!
First travel with Ginger to Chicago in The Runaway Daughter, coming July 1st
Then see Norma Rose go head-to-head with Ty Bradshaw in The Bootlegger’s Daughter coming August 1st

Find out if Forrest Reynolds can tame the mischievous Twyla in The Rebel Daughter coming September 1st

And last, but not least, discover Josie’s secret in
The Forgotten Daughter coming October 1st.

 I’ll leave you with a few slang words from the twenties:

Applesauce- an expletive same as horsefeathers, As in "Ah applesauce!"
Bank's Closed - no kissing or making out - i.e. - "Sorry, Mac, the bank's closed."
Bee's Knees - An extraordinary person, thing, idea; the ultimate.
Dead soldier - an empty beer bottle.
Flat Tire - A dull witted, insipid, disappointing date. Same as pill, pickle, drag, rag, oilcan.
Handcuff - an engagement ring (bracelets or nippers means actual handcuffs).
Ossified - a drunk person.
Torpedo - A hired gun.
Wet Blanket - a solemn person, a killjoy.


Caroline Clemmons said...

So glad to see this era becoming popular. I love the clothes and hair styles. I have a time travel plotted in which the heroine comes from the 1920s to today.

Paty Jager said...

Having read these books as Lauri's critique partner I can tell you, you are in for a treat! These flappers are feisty and looking for fun!

Lauri said...

Me, too, Caroline, and your time travel sounds wonderful!

Thanks, Paty!

Shanna Hatfield said...

Love the slang, Lauri! So fun to see it included and your books look like a great reading adventure! :)