Maps Orient Us In Historical Fiction

Historical maps are windows into other worlds. They connect us to the past in a concrete way, allowing us to visualize how to get from the marina to the nearest thermopolium in Ancient Ostia, how to reach the King’s Apartments in Henry VIII’s Hampton Court Palace, or figure out the names of streets as theyContinue reading “Maps Orient Us In Historical Fiction”

Historical Fiction Shines When It Reflects Our Diverse History

Every February, we celebrate Black History Month. Still, we haven’t yet heard many stories—stories that deserve to be told because they are part of our collective history. Understanding the complexity of the human experience requires inclusivity. Resetting how we learn history As a History major at the University of Texas, I took a writing seminarContinue reading “Historical Fiction Shines When It Reflects Our Diverse History”

A Writing Plan for 2021: Taking Stock and Setting Goals

Like most people, I won’t be sorry to see the back of 2020. Setting goals for the new year feels odd when I know we’ll still be in quarantine for several months. In some ways, 2020 has shifted the way we view goal-setting overall; allowing ourselves some breathing room to do the best we can.Continue reading “A Writing Plan for 2021: Taking Stock and Setting Goals”

Puzzling My Way Through Research

Research is an essential component of all the writing I do. Both my fiction (historical) and nonfiction (science policy) require a lot of upfront research as well as what seems like continuous research during writing and editing. Luckily, I enjoy research. But sometimes it can seem endless. There’s always more to research. I hand-write myContinue reading “Puzzling My Way Through Research”

NaNoWriMo in the Time of COVID

National Novel Writing Month is almost here! But this year feels different… because it is different. Preptober—getting ready for November In NaNo terms, you’re either a planner or a pantser (writing by the seat of your pants with no plan). I’m definitely a planner. In 2018 and 2019, I not only spent time developing detailedContinue reading “NaNoWriMo in the Time of COVID”

Writing in the Time of No Time

It’s August. Five months and counting since quarantine began. Weeks upon weeks of being inside with a husband, an eight-year old, and two cats. And now the heat. Open the door and it feels like an oven blast. Stress. Distance learning, teleworking, global health crisis, injustice, political news that seems to spiral down every day.Continue reading “Writing in the Time of No Time”

Taking the Story from Idea to Draft

I’ve got an idea. Now what? In 2019, I did a full work up of my family history. Due diligence is necessary when researching. There is a lot of garbage online about genealogy. But there is also a lot of great stuff. It’s just a matter of sorting the wheat from the chaff. Cross-referencing andContinue reading “Taking the Story from Idea to Draft”

The Evolution of a Writer, Historical Fiction Edition

I wrote a book. Two, actually. Both historical fiction. Hopefully with more to come. Research is the key to historical fiction I consider research to be my superpower. We all have a superpower. It’s usually something you are good at, but also something you like to do. Did I love to research first or didContinue reading “The Evolution of a Writer, Historical Fiction Edition”