#TBT: Other Books as Resources

September 3, 2015

We’re taking a look at resources historical authors use when conducting research, and this week we’re going to talk about an oft neglected resource.

Other Books

Shake Down Your Ashes Cover_edited-1This probably sounds strange as obviously authors would use books as resources.  But I’m not talking non-fiction narrative here.  I’m talking fiction books.

Once upon a time in a faraway land, I was an English major in the honors track for creative writing, and I was tasked with writing a creative piece as my thesis project.  I, of course, chose to write a historical piece that I would later publish as Shake Down Your Ashes.  Required in this thesis project was an element of primary sources research.  This is fancy college talk for I had to read stuff from the same period as the one in which I was writing.

To put it simply: if you’re going to write about a story set in Jane Austen’s time period, read something Jane Austen wrote.

I pick on Jane Austen on purpose because Jane is the Bible for many Regency romance novelists and is often considered the premiere pioneer in the field.

So when conducting historical research, find out what books were popular during that time period and use them to find out what life was really like in that time period.

Here’s one that I will be going back to as I begin research on a new series.

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