Author Tips on Writing Historical Fiction

Historical Fiction Writing TipsToday I’ve selected authors’ tips on writing historical fiction from around the web.

From How to Write Historical Fiction: 7 Tips on Accuracy and Authenticity by Susanna Calkins author of A Murder at Rosamund’s Gate

  • Let the characters engage with the historical details – a variation on show don’t tell
  • Allow your characters to question and explore their place in society – doing so reveals the context of the times
  • Love the process, because readers will still find errors

From Seven Rules for Writing Historical Fiction by Elizabeth Crook author of The Night Journal: A Novel

  • Sweat the Small Stuff – small details allow readers to engage all senses in the past world you are building
  • Dump the Ballast – too much detail is a killer

10 Tips for Aspiring Historical Fiction Writers by Stephanie Dray author of Daughters of the Nile

  • Read historical fiction – sounds obvious doesn’t it but you have to appreciate excellent historical fiction in order to be successful
  • Know when to stop researching – cautions about falling down the proverbial rabbit hole

5 Writing Tips from Mary Sharratt author of Illuminations

  • Research comes before writing – get the facts right to ensure a good foundation for your novel
  • Inhabit the mind and skin of your characters – you have to understand the sensibilities of the time so your readers can feel immersed in it

6 Top Tips for Writing Historical Fiction by Dinah Jeffries author of The Tea Planter’s Wife

  • Pick a universal theme if you can – the concerns of your novel need to resonate with modern readers
  • Choose a time and place that really intrigues you – passion will make your story more compelling

Each article offers more suggestions and explanations than the ones I’ve picked.

FOR MORE ON READING & WRITING HISTORICAL FICTION follow A WRITER OF HISTORY (using the widget on the left sidebar)

M.K. Tod writes historical fiction and blogs about all aspects of the genre at A Writer of History. Her latest novel, LIES TOLD IN SILENCE is set in WWI France and is available from Amazon, NookKoboGoogle Play and iTunes. Her debut novel, UNRAVELLED: Two wars. Two affairs. One marriage. is also available from these retailers.

Mary can be contacted on Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads.