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Friday, May 4, 2012

Development - more Historical Study

4 May 2012, Development - more Historical 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

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.
Today's Blog: To see the steps in the publication process, visit my writing website and select "production schedule," you will be sent to

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 of artifacts

I looked at primary source documents yesterday--I'll get more in depth about them later.  Today, I want to define secondary source documents.

A secondary source document is the direct report of an eyewitness account from someone who was not an eyewitness.  In a legal court this is called hearsay evidence.  In history, secondary sources are some of our best sources.  Generally, they are documents like these:

1.  Newspaper accounts
2.  Official biographies (written from interviews of a person)
3.  Interviews
4.  Reports on actual events post the event (part of such a report can be considered primary)
5.  Court reports
6.  A painting or sculpture made from an actual person or place

A secondary document or artifact is never considered more accurate than any primary document or artifact.

All secondary accounts are considered interpretive.  Since they are not the actual eyewitness to the event they may or may not accurately portray the event, but like I mentioned, sometimes secondary evidence is the best we have in history.  For example, before photography (which is a primary source, unless reenacted), painting and sculpture was about the only visual witness we had to history.

I will use secondary sources when primary sources don't exist, but they are always considered less accurate and less reliable than any primary source.

I'll write more about this and the study of history, 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:, and the individual novel websites:,,,,, and

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