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Showing posts from October, 2006

Confessions of a Non-historian

Since the publication of two historical novels, I frequently get variations of the same question:

How can you do so much research so fast?

The simple answer: I don't.

Frankly, if I were a dyed-in-the-wool historian, I wouldn't have a prayer of writing novels; there wouldn't be any time. So I don't pretend to be a true historian. I am, first and foremost, a novelist. I try very hard to make things as accurate as I can, and I would hate to find out I did something wrong (I haven't gotten wind of any errors yet, but that type of news is a historical novelist's lingering fear).

Since grade school I've read books set in or written during the 1800s, so writing about it myself isn't too strange. While I'm not an expert on the period, I do have a decent grasp on how people talked, what they did on a daily basis, and what the customs were. Some of the best compliments I've gotten on my books is that the voice feels real to the time period.

It was interest…