This must be the week for posts on historical fiction research & writing! I was working on one of my own for next week when all these great links appeared in my feed reader:
Shannon Lawrence talks about doing it right. She mentions an author who hadn’t done her research and another who IS doing it right.
Donna Gillespie at Pen in Hand on Research: a burden, or a writer’s best friend? Do you have “research rapture”?
A Writer of History reviews survey results: Can you find enough Historical Fiction? 78% said yes. The “No” folks provided comments, including insights into what is missing in the genre.
Top Historical Fiction Authors Talk About What Attracts Readers at A Writer of History.
Authenticity & voice. Two critical elements of writing historical fiction. A L Berridge at The History Girls discusses To Thee or Not to Thee: Writing Historical Voices. The knights in my novella are English but they’d be speaking a version of French in the 12th century. Will my dialogue & narrative style keep the reader enmeshed in that time? A librarian colleague and I tracked an f*ing etymology issue in the Oxford English Dictionary to find something in the vernacular that would be harsh & blunt yet understandable to the 21st century reader. No luck. I’ll be using the F word. 🙂
And medieval names? Cool. Search this: People of Medieval Scotland, “a database of all known people of Scotland between 1093 and 1314 mentioned in over 8600 contemporary documents.” Search or browse by gender, occupation, names, document types, and more.
What? Enough on historical fiction say ye? Sigh.
I’m always looking for inspiration for blog posts. Darcy Patterson has some good advice including “…create a list of 5 Talking Points: a tidbit about the author, the scene that made you laugh out loud, the place where you wanted to throw the book across the room, a memorable line, and a quote from someone about the topic of the book. In other words, be deliberate about Talking about the book.” See more of her ideas at Word of Mouth: Random Acts of Publicity 2012.
Now sit back, enjoy To the Sea by Arbitrary Sky. Relax. Calm.
Until next week, happy reading! I’m headed back to bloody Acre and the 12th century.