For New Authors of Historical Fiction

When discussing potential new topics for A Writer of History, the group of authors who participated suggested including posts aimed at new historical fiction authors – those writing a first or second historical novel.

With over 1000 posts to choose from, I’ve included links to 6 earlier posts that offer good grounding material.

Time Travel – the work of historical fiction: Writers of historical fiction are challenged to convey a true picture of the historical setting in terms of characters, dialogue, setting, plot, conflict, theme and world building. Basically time travel for readers. But what does this really entail? How do writers inhabit the mindsets of their characters to create that feeling of being there?

Setting Is Like an Iceberg: This post looks at setting in the context of historical fiction. It is essentially a list of topics a writer should consider as they uncover the world of their novel. Topics like the social domain, everyday life, work life, politics, religion, government, major institutions of the time, events and timelines, landscape and geography.

5 Ingredients of Favourite Historical Fiction: In a 2015 reader survey, I asked participants to name three favourite historical novels. Listed in the post are the twelve top titles mentioned by over 2,000 readers along with my take on the characteristics they share. While the favourite historical novels of today may not be the same, I bet these characteristics remain highly relevant.

Author Tips on Writing Historical Fiction: a 2016 post sharing author tips on writing historical fiction from around the world.

World Building – a Look at History: For those writing historical fiction, we have oodles of historical events to choose from. Our challenge is to choose the historical events that are of critical importance to the ‘now’ of our novels and to shaping compelling character arcs and plot lines …

World Building – Culture & Society: In order to build the world of a novel, authors must consider the culture and society of their story. According to one definition, a culture represents the beliefs and practices of a group, while society represents the people who share those beliefs and practices …

In the next post, I’ll include another group of posts for new authors that relate to writing craft and the business of being an author.


M.K. Tod writes historical fiction. Her latest novel is THE ADMIRAL’S WIFE, a dual timeline set in Hong Kong. Mary’s other novels, PARIS IN RUINS, TIME AND REGRET, LIES TOLD IN SILENCE and UNRAVELLED are available from AmazonNookKoboGoogle Play and iTunes. She can be contacted on FacebookTwitter and Goodreads or on her website

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Meet M.K.Tod

The historical fiction author behind A Writer of History...

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