By Kelly Bridgewater
Writing Historical fiction is hard.
You have to make your readers join you as you explore and have characters interact with certain historical events and timelines.
As an avid reader of Historical Romance fiction especially World War II fiction, I know what it is like to read a story that doesn't feel right either because the author did not do their research on the hairstyles, clothes, music, or even the movies of the time period, so then the rest of the story is off for me as the reader because then I don't know if I can trust the author.
But luckily for us because of the internet, there is so many different ways to do research and make your stories authenticate for the readers.
I honestly admire authors who write Biblical fiction like Connilyn Cossette because I bet there is a lot of research, but they have more license to be creative in their stories because majority of readers are not familiar with this time period.
Here are some of the suggestions I have heard for writing fiction well:
-Visit the Location.
Well that sounds good in theory, but I don't make a lot of money, so I can't fly off to England or Germany where my stories take place and research it, but with the internet, I can take virtual tours of some of the places. Even though, it still is not the same thing.
-If available, talk to someone who lived through the historical event or time period.
-Journal and Newspaper articles are a gold mine for finding story ideas and researching the time period.
-Try to find experts in the field who can answer your questions.
- Books. Of course.
- Audit a class at a University. The University I work at has offered a class on World War II, so I have decided to audit the class. By auditing the class, you have to have permission from the professor and the school to allow you to attend class. If you have the wiggle room in your work budget, then this might be just the same thing for you. You don't actually have to do the assignments, but you can purchase the books and attend class. You'll learn a lot without all the pressures of completing the assignments. What a great idea!
What about you? What are some of your tips for budding writers of historical fiction?