Hurray!

First things first:  Congratulations to Kristan Higgins for winning the 2008 RITA award!!!  I loved Catch of the Day, and highly recommend reading it.  Kristan is a very funny and nice person, I’ve enjoyed attending two of the same conferences as her so far.  We went to the same college, though at different times.  Go Kristan!  Her new novel, Just One of the Guys, has just come out from Harlequin.  Enjoy!

Crisis over, by a day.  I think it was hormones, I was very touchy about my story for a couple days there, especially since it is still so new in my mind.  I was feeling very jealous concerning my man Cicero, didn’t want anyone else to have a book about him ;).  But really, the foci of the two stories are very different, so I’m not going to worry my head over it.

One thing I find difficult about writing historical fiction is finding the proper balance between researching my idea and the actual writing of it.  Just like there is no one correct way of writing a book, there is no particular right way of researching, other than yes, you have to do it.  But it is dangerous; I can get so wrapped up in researching (especially in a case like this, where I LOVE reading Cicero and about Ancient Rome) that I forget, hey, I’m supposed to be writing this thing!  I don’t want to write the whole novel and then realize I messed something big up.  Also, I keep finding more and more information (hence, the whole purpose of research) that helps me tremendously with getting more and more ideas….  So what I am shooting for is doing my research now, as much as I need to.  Then before bed every night, I will sit down and just write a rough scene.  That way I can still stay into my story without getting completely lost in the research.
Just got a Rejection Letter from a pretty big SF magazine.  There was a personal comment on the form letter that said, among other things, that my story was WELL WRITTEN.  This made me happy.  And from reading the comments, I know that mostly, the story was rejected because it wasn’t a good fit for the magazine.  The comments did give me a couple things to think about, which is also excellent.  All in all, a very good rejection.  
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One thought on “Hurray!

  1. A vergy good rejection means you’re in the game. Well written is an awesome comment to get back. *pat*pat*Yay for Kristan Higgins! I see her every day, along with you, and Viansa, and Geri Krotow. You ladies are on my desk!I know what you mean about the research. It’s so easy to get all wrapped up in it. And then I have this fear: have you ever been reading an historical fiction and come across a glaring error? Suddenly, you’re yanked out of the story and everything is suspect. I agree that many have manipulated facts to their advantage – those aren’t the historicals I’m talking about – but there is a fine line between blurring reality and disrespecting the past. You also owe it to your readers to make your story plausible or at least make them suspend disbelief. So, yeah, you want to know what you need to know, but you don’t want to overdo the research. You sound like you know that you’re close to that line. Sketching out a scene every night is a great way to keep yourself on track. Good thinking!Do you keep notes pertaining to your story as you do your research? Like look something up and immediately translate it to how it affects your characters in your story? That’s helped me before.

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