Historical Novel Society Conference 2014 – Part V: Lindsey Davis and Jerome de Groot
Saturday’s Conference was closed with an entertaining conversation between the academic Jerome de Groot (author of the non-fiction work The Historical Novel) and Lindsey Davis, writer of the Falco and Albia series and others.
The historian and the novelist are not too different as both make a living observing and writing about people. The advice that came out of this discussion is very handy for anyone at any stage of a writing career:
1) Making up stories is a good way of learning how to write at a young age and reading a lot is a great help too.
2) Most readers will read anything so don’t worry about following a trend. In fact don’t follow a trend as it would have passed by the time you’ve got your book out there. Be original.
3) Have a day job.
4) Don’t use modern language or swear words.
5) Cut, cut and cut again.
6) Read the classics when doing your research.
7) Visit sites and museums and enjoy going there and learning.
8) You don’t have to know every single thing about the period you are writing about, unless there are huge gaps in the book.
9) Think about things from the character’s point of view, not your own.
A really fun and entertaining end to the first day of the conference. Tune in tomorrow to find out what happened the next day…