As a writer of historical fiction, I understand that although yes, I write fiction, that doesn’t mean I can just fabricate any and everything that happened during the eras in which my stories take place. It’s imperative that I use multiple sources to find my information–mainly history books and documentaries. I spend countless hours reading, looking at maps, watching videos and chatting with another author friend to get those facts straight. Two nights ago, I was learning about medicine (and I use that term loosely) during the 17th and 18th century. Our readers are brilliant and they will spot BS a mile away so making that call, emailing that source or at least looking for the facts that matter in the background–and sometimes the forefront of the story, only make it that much more real, for lack of a better word.
Another author friend who also writes historical fiction of the pirate variety like myself, even interviews sailing folks, historians and the like in order to create a more authentic story, fiction or not. My favorite story is when she spoke to an authority on shark attacks in order to make a scene she was writing more realistic. Bloody brilliant I’d say! 😉
As always, excellent advice Seumas!
…I’m not among the legions of the Grammar Police, recognising that this ol’ Jurassic is as likely as the next quill-scraper to screw up linguistically sum’where along the way… nit-picking is for… well, for people who have a ‘thing’ about nits, I s’pose… but, the good is in trying, I’m told… so try I do… in particular, I’m referring to stuff in my novels… the content detail, Mabel… I choose not to give the kinda in-depth agonising nuance by agonising nuance of bullet size, calibre, velocity and skull-splitting impact speeds that appear in tomes by, fr’example, the late Tom Clancy… rote lists like that do NUTHIN for me as a reader, and that’s only in my not so ‘umble opinion… yeez are all entitled to yer own, of course… and yeez won’t hear me denying yeez that right… what I’m more interested in is getting facts as accurate as…
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