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Writing Historical Fiction

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This is aimed at all those writers interested in the area of historical fiction and who are keen to know more about it. The many different kinds of historical fiction are covered in detail - the family saga, the romance, the nostalgia novel, the adventure story, the 'straight' historical. The particular requirements of this genre are that the novel must be believable. This is aimed at all those writers interested in the area of historical fiction and who are keen to know more about it. The many different kinds of historical fiction are covered in detail - the family saga, the romance, the nostalgia novel, the adventure story, the 'straight' historical. The particular requirements of this genre are that the novel must be believable. Painstaking, but enjoyable research needs to be carried out to establish convincing background and characters. Observations from a number of leading historical novelists, including Rosemary Sutcliff, Winston Graham and Jean Plaidy are included in the book. Rhona Martin won the Georgette Heyer Historical Novel Award for Gallows Wedding. Other novels include The Unicorn Summer, Mango Walk and Goodbye Sally.


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This is aimed at all those writers interested in the area of historical fiction and who are keen to know more about it. The many different kinds of historical fiction are covered in detail - the family saga, the romance, the nostalgia novel, the adventure story, the 'straight' historical. The particular requirements of this genre are that the novel must be believable. This is aimed at all those writers interested in the area of historical fiction and who are keen to know more about it. The many different kinds of historical fiction are covered in detail - the family saga, the romance, the nostalgia novel, the adventure story, the 'straight' historical. The particular requirements of this genre are that the novel must be believable. Painstaking, but enjoyable research needs to be carried out to establish convincing background and characters. Observations from a number of leading historical novelists, including Rosemary Sutcliff, Winston Graham and Jean Plaidy are included in the book. Rhona Martin won the Georgette Heyer Historical Novel Award for Gallows Wedding. Other novels include The Unicorn Summer, Mango Walk and Goodbye Sally.

30 review for Writing Historical Fiction

  1. 4 out of 5

    Kristina

    For being a nonfiction book on the topic of "How to Write Fiction" I strangely enjoyed reading this book. It is a small volume (Only 91 pages if you don't count the index) full of tons of information from every level of writing; the time it takes, how long it should be, where to start, how much research to do, how to break up chapters, et cetera, et cetera, all to getting published and starting your second novel. At some point I will have to add this book to my collection.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Joy Rancatore

    Rhona Martin delivers a succinct yet thorough treatise on how to approach writing in general and historical fiction in particular in Writing Historical Fiction. This book brought me many nuggets of gold to tuck away in my treasure box of writing advice; and I plan to purchase a copy for my own shelf soon. The advice to follow the passion and heart for my story became the biggest takeaway for me. I would highly recommend this book to any writer, regardless of their genre. Martin guides students of Rhona Martin delivers a succinct yet thorough treatise on how to approach writing in general and historical fiction in particular in Writing Historical Fiction. This book brought me many nuggets of gold to tuck away in my treasure box of writing advice; and I plan to purchase a copy for my own shelf soon. The advice to follow the passion and heart for my story became the biggest takeaway for me. I would highly recommend this book to any writer, regardless of their genre. Martin guides students of the written craft through doing appropriate research; understanding the time period and relaying that properly through characters' motives, language and challenges; developing a proper structure for a story that will grab readers at page one and rush them along swiftly on a ride worth recommendation to all their friends; committing to the importance (and fun!) of the revision stage; and understanding and moving on from submission, rejection and/or publication. This candid look at the creative process leaves nothing out and no questions unanswered in less than 100 pages!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Charlotte Liebel

    WRITING HISTORICAL FICTION by Rhona Martin Highlights include: [Cover] ...choosing and researching a subject ...setting the scene and recreating the period ...writing dialogue without anachronism ...balancing accuracy with entertainment Winner of the Georgette Heyer Historical Novel Prize I must say this is another of my reference books. The type of book to open and turn to any chapter for an hour of pleasure and study. ~Charlotte Liebel

  4. 4 out of 5

    Elisabeth

    excellent and not just for historical fiction

  5. 4 out of 5

    Gloria

    This book offers helpful tips and insights into writing historical fiction. Many of the author’s suggestions can also be applied to other genres. The only reason I didn’t rate it higher is because the author also gives tips on how to write scenes that I, as a conscientious Christian, would never write (intimate sex scenes, gore, etc). Fortunately that was no more than a few paragraphs and easy to skim over. The rest of the book had sound advice, and I look forward to putting it to use.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Kim

    Short useful read if you want to get into the mindset of writing historical fiction. It helped affirm that my basic idea and approach are sound; and it has tips for various types of historical fiction and mistakes to avoid in each one, as well as a collection of tips from various historical fiction writers to round out the book.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Pamela L.

    Though over 20yrs old and some information outdated, this little book is packed full of useful tips for writers of historical fiction.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Fred Kohn

    This was a fun little book. Though short, it worked better for me to spread it out over several days; reading just a chapter at a time. The book is horribly dated and thoroughly British; I had to smile as I have no dustbin in my American house or petrol in my automobile. But of course such things are easily overlooked. The advice on writing is excellent, and that, of course, is the important thing.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Emily Ursuliak

  10. 5 out of 5

    Óscar

  11. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

  12. 5 out of 5

    Sara Gregory

  13. 4 out of 5

    Bellavida

  14. 5 out of 5

    Penny Newkirk

  15. 5 out of 5

    carol bachl

  16. 4 out of 5

    Matt

  17. 5 out of 5

    John Matsui

  18. 5 out of 5

    Mary Lou Erben

  19. 5 out of 5

    Kim Pflum

  20. 4 out of 5

    Louisa Bauman

  21. 4 out of 5

    Kura

  22. 5 out of 5

    Victor

  23. 4 out of 5

    Jackie

  24. 4 out of 5

    Prince M

  25. 4 out of 5

    Alice De Dominicis

  26. 4 out of 5

    Valerie Cullers

  27. 4 out of 5

    Rob Bignell

  28. 4 out of 5

    Mary Catelli

  29. 5 out of 5

    Ornella Tallante

  30. 4 out of 5

    Linda Whitehead

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