The Rabbit Hole

I took a fantastic seminar this weekend at the Writer’s Digest Novel Writing Conference in Pasadena. It was worth it to see the genre of Historical Fiction get some spotlight time. It’s a love-hate for me – I love reading it, and I hate writing it. Most of the time.

For someone who is as easily distracted as me (oooo…look! SHINY!), research is often the rabbit hole I fall into, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, and emerging many, many hours later, with circles under my eyes, and a desperate need for caffeine to make it through the rest of the day.

This does not happen only with my book research. My latest is ancestry.com, where I go off on tangents and lines that are only remotely related, but it’s still so much fun digging back in the past, I plow on.

The novel that I’m working on now, Hunger’s Echo, requires details that are well-researched, and sourced. The Great Hunger in Ireland was a terrible genocide that we will probably never know the scope of, as records are not always reliable from that time.

This is where I find myself searching and striving to get it right. Not just for myself, but for the countless, graveless, faceless, nameless others who were the victims.

I’m grateful that I received some tools on how to “Delve into the Past.” Setting time limits for myself, and being firm about what I really need to research can prevent rabbit-holing.

Care to make a wager on when I’ll resurface today?

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