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81
Quill and Feather Pub [Public] / Re: I'm just here to whine
« Last post by Maggie Ann on July 12, 2019, 03:24:45 AM »
I do my research first. I like to set my historicals against significant happenings. It's how I get my timeline. But that doesn't mean I don't have to stop and recheck things or something comes up that needs further research.

Case in point, I was finishing up the book set against the reign of Richard III and wanted to double-check the Battle of Bosworth Field. Information that the battle had taken place by a different hill had just been published three months before. They found Richard's badge in the new location. I put in that info and added an author's note so I wouldn't get beaten up by all the Ricardians out there.

But, for my latest series, I did all the research, set up my timeline, wrote the first book and started the second when I realized I'd lost the knack. Or at least temporarily misplaced it. I set those two aside and now I'm writing contemporary to sort of cleanse my palate.

Yes, it's daunting. I should take a blank wall in my den and do a massive timeline from 1066 to 1509 in permanent marker, sort of like the Black family tree.
Unfortunately (my mistake) I don't still have the timeline from the series of novels I wrote about this period more than six years ago.  (My more recent novels were set about a hundred years later) Not to mention the fact that in this series will be about a different main character which means I would need additional information about his life. It is somewhat different as to detail when your novels are about historical people rather than set with that background. If you say your character was someplace on a particular day, you better know they were there, or at least not demonstrably somewhere else, on that particular day.

Since my degrees are on the history of the period, I don't bother with general research, but HF fans will indeed check every single detail and woe betide you if you get something wrong.

The one I wrote set in Richard III's reign has him as a prominent, although not a main, character. The book I set aside, has John (there is only one John in England) who is also prominent although not a main. John moved around a lot trying to avoid the barons, and fortunately, I was able to find precise dates and times and what he was actually doing. I threw in an interesting little fact about his ordering 100 lbs of almonds for Isabella, his wife. Apparently, it was some kind of emergency. Also, the gifts (again with the almonds) he sent to Eleanor, the niece he threw into prison and kept there until she died.

It doesn't work for me unless the current king is portrayed along with the prominent nobles of the time. I stopped reading historical romances a long time ago because there was some vague king somewhere in an unnamed castle and I need a lot more facts than that to make me happy.

On the other hand, I can't call what I do historical fiction because the king, etc, are not the main characters. True historical fiction is what you write.

82
Quill and Feather Pub [Public] / Re: I'm just here to whine
« Last post by Vijaya on July 12, 2019, 02:31:32 AM »
Starting a new historical novel, even set in a period that you've written about a lot, is f*cking HARD.  :writethink:

Every bit of research I did before has to be rechecked because I might not remember exactly when Lord whoever was born and when battle whatsit took place.  :dizzy Not to mention a new family tree. And hundreds of details all mapped out. Yikes.

There has got to be an easier way to make a living. I may take up ditch digging.


I feel your pain--I'm revising a historical right now. I'll be happy after the work is done!
83
Quill and Feather Pub [Public] / Re: I'm just here to whine
« Last post by Simon Haynes on July 12, 2019, 01:57:00 AM »
I'd love to write a novel set in WWII (air combat in particular) or the Napoleonic wars - especially the sea battles.

I don't have the historical background or the lifetime required to obtain it, so I did the next best thing - I wrote an SF novel with dogfighting combat, and I included wooden-ship sea battles in a fantasy trilogy. It scratched the itch, at least.

84
Quill and Feather Pub [Public] / Re: I'm just here to whine
« Last post by JRTomlin on July 12, 2019, 01:31:18 AM »
I do my research first. I like to set my historicals against significant happenings. It's how I get my timeline. But that doesn't mean I don't have to stop and recheck things or something comes up that needs further research.

Case in point, I was finishing up the book set against the reign of Richard III and wanted to double-check the Battle of Bosworth Field. Information that the battle had taken place by a different hill had just been published three months before. They found Richard's badge in the new location. I put in that info and added an author's note so I wouldn't get beaten up by all the Ricardians out there.

But, for my latest series, I did all the research, set up my timeline, wrote the first book and started the second when I realized I'd lost the knack. Or at least temporarily misplaced it. I set those two aside and now I'm writing contemporary to sort of cleanse my palate.

Yes, it's daunting. I should take a blank wall in my den and do a massive timeline from 1066 to 1509 in permanent marker, sort of like the Black family tree.
Unfortunately (my mistake) I don't still have the timeline from the series of novels I wrote about this period more than six years ago.  (My more recent novels were set about a hundred years later) Not to mention the fact that in this series will be about a different main character which means I would need additional information about his life. It is somewhat different as to detail when your novels are about historical people rather than set with that background. If you say your character was someplace on a particular day, you better know they were there, or at least not demonstrably somewhere else, on that particular day.

Since my degrees are on the history of the period, I don't bother with general research, but HF fans will indeed check every single detail and woe betide you if you get something wrong.
85
Quill and Feather Pub [Public] / Re: I'm just here to whine
« Last post by DmGuay on July 12, 2019, 01:00:24 AM »
I don't know if I could do historical!

I learned a few hard lessons from my first PN/UF trilogy and NO.1 is: Take notes! Write a story bible AS YOU WRITE IT, or revise it.

I'm doing that as I go for this series and I hope it will make details easier to find/ harder to bork up in future books.
86
Quill and Feather Pub [Public] / Re: I'm just here to whine
« Last post by DrewMcGunn on July 11, 2019, 11:59:04 PM »
Starting a new historical novel, even set in a period that you've written about a lot, is f*cking HARD.  :writethink:

Every bit of research I did before has to be rechecked because I might not remember exactly when Lord whoever was born and when battle whatsit took place.  :dizzy Not to mention a new family tree. And hundreds of details all mapped out. Yikes.

There has got to be an easier way to make a living. I may take up ditch digging.

(Through whining now. As you were.)

Amen. I just finished writing a 6 book series set in an alternate 19th century. Not only did I have to keep remember the stuff I wasn't changing, but I had to remember the stuff I had.

And now I have to get ready to do it all over again... once I work through the various concepts I'm kicking around.
87
Quill and Feather Pub [Public] / Re: I'm just here to whine
« Last post by sandree on July 11, 2019, 10:53:42 PM »
I cannot imagine how hard writing historical novels is. I have dyscalculia (a math learning disability) and it seems to extend to time as well for me. I am finding the timelines in my writing very hard to wrap my head around. And then there is the 65 year old memory... This series will definitely stop at three novels. I donít think my poor mind can handle more than that.
88
Quill and Feather Pub [Public] / Re: 50+ words a day...no matter what!
« Last post by Maggie Ann on July 11, 2019, 10:34:54 PM »
No new wordage, but I did edit 25 pages and designed all four of the covers for the series. They're still in mock-up mode after 492 (maybe 493, I lost count) versions, but I think I've got it. Now I'll be sending out the images for cutting out and whenever they get back to me, I'll finalize the covers. No rush at all.

I'm counting pages and not chapters because I don't chapterize until after the final edit.

The library and and the story are pulling me onward this morning.
89
Quill and Feather Pub [Public] / Re: I'm just here to whine
« Last post by Maggie Ann on July 11, 2019, 10:31:08 PM »
I do my research first. I like to set my historicals against significant happenings. It's how I get my timeline. But that doesn't mean I don't have to stop and recheck things or something comes up that needs further research.

Case in point, I was finishing up the book set against the reign of Richard III and wanted to double-check the Battle of Bosworth Field. Information that the battle had taken place by a different hill had just been published three months before. They found Richard's badge in the new location. I put in that info and added an author's note so I wouldn't get beaten up by all the Ricardians out there.

But, for my latest series, I did all the research, set up my timeline, wrote the first book and started the second when I realized I'd lost the knack. Or at least temporarily misplaced it. I set those two aside and now I'm writing contemporary to sort of cleanse my palate.

Yes, it's daunting. I should take a blank wall in my den and do a massive timeline from 1066 to 1509 in permanent marker, sort of like the Black family tree.

90
Quill and Feather Pub [Public] / Re: I'm just here to whine
« Last post by notthatamanda on July 11, 2019, 08:31:10 PM »
I was planning on my next mystery series being set in Victorian England and you are now giving me serious doubt!

 :icon_eek:
If I had it to do over again I would do a lot of research ahead of time because fitting in the time line as you go or after (I wrote one character's POV first) was tough.  Live and learn.  And weep.
Now I'm writing a contemporary novel and my biggest problem is my hand hurts from writing so much.
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