Thursday, May 24, 2012

I Hate History!

I Hate History
    Okay. So it’s no big secret--I’m not a history buff. That’s my husbands job. And he knows so much trivial irrelevant historical crap it isn’t even funny. But all of those facts and figures, dates and places are the bane of my existence, my arch nemesis. Besides, what does a writer need with historical fodder?! Ha! The laugh was on me. Who knew?
The Internet - We all want to sound like we have a clue what we’re talking about, even in our make believe worlds in our heads. In order to get into my character’s heads, I needed to research where they came from. Sabre is from the mid-1700’s, from England. So how did he get here? Well, he was a captured orphan brought to the U.S. on one of the slave ships. Once he got here, he needed a history of his own. The ships captain became very fond of Sabre and raised him as his own. And when Sabre was grown, I made him a militiaman in the Revolutionary War, and focused on one battle in particular, the Paoli Massacre. Nick is from the early 1900’s, and a little research online and at the local cemetery provided a great back story for him. And suddenly, history didn’t seem quite so boring any more.
    I discovered that to make my ‘dream weavers’ believable, I needed to research dreams, sleep stages and brain waves…and weird things like whether or not it is beneficial for a person to view the body of a deceased loved one…and (yes, I’m a bit morbid) embalming techniques from the early 20th century. Isn’t the internet awesome?!
Hell’s Belles Interviews - For those of you ‘out of the know’, Hell’s Belles is an all girl, ACDC tribute band that totally kicks ass. My friend, Heather (who Ivy is loosely based on) is friends with the former lead singer of the band, Jamie. So, after a show at the Knitting Factory here in Spokane, we went out for drinks with her. Such an awesome lady. I also contacted bassist, Mandy, who corresponded with me via email and helped me do email interviews with the other girls in the band. All of this info is used in Dream Weaver’s second book, Rock Star and one of the characters is named after Mandy’s son, Kylen--just cuz I thought it was a cool name.
Internet, Interviews, Info, oh my! - The internet has info on just about anything you can imagine…and some you really don’t want to. The library and your local book store have books on everything, too. And, sometimes, people ‘in the know’, like rock stars and cemetery receptionists, will make themselves available to answer any questions you might have. Whatever resource you choose, history can definitely plump up a flat character.

Special thanks to the Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network website for comprehensive information on the subject and statistics of rape in America.

1 comment:

  1. Very, very cool, Su! I've always wanted to add the newspaper archive site to my research materials, but it costs money...wah.