9 May 2012, Development - Historical Study, Beginning Study
Introduction: I wrote the novel Aksinya: Enchantment and the Daemon. This was my 21st novel and through this blog, I gave you the entire novel in installments that included commentary on the writing. In the commentary, in addition to other general information on writing, I explained, how the novel was constructed, the metaphors and symbols in it, the writing techniques and tricks I used, and the way I built the scenes. You can look back through this blog and read the entire novel beginning with http://www.pilotlion.blogspot.com/2010/10/new-novel-part-3-girl-and-demon.html.
I'm using this novel as an example of how I produce, market, and eventually (we hope) get a novel published. I'll keep you informed along the way.
I'm writing about sources of historical research and how to make historical research. These apply to any novel or any subject you might wish to study. Here is a list:
1. Primary source documents or artifacts
2. Secondary source documents or artifacts
3. Tertiary source documents or artifacts
I made the point yesterday, if you want to study to write anything in history, including historical fiction, you must start with primary source documents. A document that is of a primary degree, a primary source, is one that is an eyewitness account. In history, eyewitness accounts are all that really count. These are the documents that are worth gold to the historian. The study of history means the study of these eyewitness accounts. Literally, anything else is rubbish.
When I began a study about ancient Egypt to write my book, Aegypt, I found a few eyewitness sources. There were few, but they were very valuable. Because I was interested in the culture and society of ancient Egypt, I also read ancient Egyptian poetry and the Book of the Dead. I mentioned before that literature can be a great source of cultural and social information.
There are a few secondary sources about ancient Egypt. Herodotus provided some information, although his account has come under question in modern times. I read Herodotus along with the other known secondary sources. I added to this some books on ancient Egyptian artifacts and monuments. This kind of primary source information, that is, artifacts and monuments, is very important to the study of history.
I'll explain more about historical study tomorrow.
I'll explain more about tension and first scene development. I'll talk about characteristics that make a bad first scene/chapter eventually.
I'll repeat my published novel websites so you can see more examples: http://www.ldalford.com/, and the individual novel websites: http://www.aegyptnovel.com/, http://www.centurionnovel.com/, http://www.thesecondmission.com/, http://www.theendofhonor.com/, http://www.thefoxshonor.com/, and http://www.aseasonofhonor.com/.