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Date Posted: 13:07:51 11/18/09 Wed
Author: Debi
Subject: Not writing one, but enjoy readng them
In reply to: Fi 's message, "Anyone else writing a historical novel?" on 10:53:18 11/18/09 Wed

My suggestions that may help all over with your questions are finding books about that period in history, and setting and also, reading fiction from those same eras. That might help with the getting into the character's head kind of thing. If you have access to a university library, that would be a fantastic help, or access to teachers of literature and history, they sometimes have anecdotes from their studies that can help.

Full of advice for someone that doesn't write historical fiction, aren't I?;-) If I were though, those would probably be my first steps. I tend to read the heck out of stuff online when I have questions

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[> Hi, Fi! Short for "stereo," right? (Sorry, just had to! *G*) Here's what I do >>>>> -- Page, 14:31:37 11/18/09 Wed

I don't suppose my WIP is actually historical fiction, being set in the late 1960s and early 1970s, but I've had to try and find out things from that time period that occurred in a country I've never visited. And for that, I've trolled the internet like a fiend. Don't be afraid to use broad search terms when you Google, and if you find a site where citations are used, find those citations to see if there's more info there. If it were me, I'd Google "Algerian clothing 17th century," "Algerian marriage practices 17th century," etc. and see what pops up. And take it from me, if you find a site you like, be sure to bookmark it! *G* I can't tell you the number of times I've forgotten to do that one basic thing, and then had to spend hours trying to find that site again.

One site I came across might give you a few good hints. It's Writer's Dreamtools: History by Decades.

Also, if you don't have access to a large library, try Google Books. It's amazing what you can find there, even if the books only have a snippet view.

As for the politically correct thing, I would suggest you not worry about that. People were what they were back then, and to change their attitudes or perspectives to avoid offending 21st Century readers wouldn't be true to your story. During one of the first Lallybroch chats with Herself, I was lucky enough to have been chosen to ask her a question, and I asked about the scene in Outlander where Jamie beats Claire. So many people lost their bloomin' minds over that, and I asked Diana if, knowing the reaction it would get, would she change it if she could go back and do it over. And she said, NO. She basically said people just needed to suck it up, and realize that's the way folks behaved in Scotland in the 1750s, and there was no way she'd try to make them something they weren't.

Have fun with your research, and your writing, and keep us updated!


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