Historical novels: alternative facts allowed?

Technically, novelists can make up anything they please, but getting things right is important to me, particularly when writing historical novels. I always try to create characters whose actions, decisions, dialog, and thoughts are comprehensible and who feel real within a narrative that seems believable. That’s true even for science fiction like The Sparrow and … Read more…

The end of the endless weekend

When young writers ask my advice, I always tell them, “Marry an engineer. They’re not only funny, creative, rational people, they get benefits at work and there’s been been a good job market for them since the Renaissance.” I’m not kidding about that. My husband is a software engineer. Don has not been unemployed for … Read more…

NatHist of a Novel: Poe is a go.

I’ve moved from 87% committed to the Poe novel to “Okay. I’m in.” Here’s why: 1. The first two biographies I’ve read have kept my interest and I’m looking forward to more research. 2. I’m starting this book largely ignorant of Poe’s historical, political and literary context. It’s been fun and fascinating to stretch out … Read more…