Tuesday, February 23, 2016

book fair & writers' conference

Robeson Community College, Lumberton, North Carolina
February 27, 9:30 AM - 4:30 PM

I’m heading to Book 'Em North Carolina Friday for the writers conference and book fair which takes place Saturday. It's held in Lumberton at Robeson Community College (on Fayetteville road at Exit 22 of I-95) and entry is free.  

Last year I dressed in period clothes to set the scene for my antebellum novels.
This is my second year of attending, and I hope it's as enjoyable as last year. I'll be in the auditorium with other authors and publishers with a table to display my books—a series of four antebellum novels and my most recent book Dust On the Bible.

I'm looking forward to participating in a panel discussion on Historical Fiction at 10:00 AM Saturday morning in the Green Room. My friend and fellow writer Mike Long is also on the panel. Research is essential to this genre. While working on my antebellum novels, I read diaries, news reports, and slave narratives for background in order to describe the setting.

To avoid slipping up on an anachronism, I often went to Wikipedia and other online sources to research the origins of things, such as umbrellas or toothbrushes. Even at that, sometimes there were no clear answers to questions that came up while writing.

Sometimes research showed a date when a particular item first made its appearance, but that didn’t necessarily mean it was common to the time my novel was taking place. Franklin had invented the iron pot stove years before 1850, but the only references I saw to them were oblique. It would have been a rare plantation that used a pot belly stove for heat instead of a fireplace.

If you’re in the Lumberton area, I hope you’ll stop by Book ‘em North Carolina. It’s a great place to meet writers, authors, and other readers. 

I benefited from talking to other writers about what they were working on.

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