Category Archives: Research

The Language Attic: Glaive


As I’ve mentioned before, my sweetheart’s daughter comes over periodically to consult our very large (and rather old) unabridged Merriam-Webster dictionary. She keeps a word list and, judging by the words on it, she’s been reading a lot of older … Continue reading

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The Word Museum by Jeffrey Kacirk, Barnes & Noble, New York, 2000 is a marvelous tool for writers of historical fiction. Not only does it help find the right word for the occasion, it is good for a laugh or … Continue reading

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The Reluctant Traveler (and Writer)- The Fun of Research

Reader, do you like to do research for your novels? Where do you start, and what tools do you use? I’ll answer first. I love research. Most of my writing career I’ve produced fantasy, some science fiction, and a lot … Continue reading

Posted in historical novels, Research, Writers on Writing | 6 Comments

Research and Lemons

While doing some research for my current work, I came across a set of recipes–and a deadly superstition. The first was for Atlantic Beach Pie, a dessert from the mid-Atlantic states. It sounded strange: a lemon custard pie on a … Continue reading

Posted in Food and Cooking, Research, Writing life | 5 Comments

Help me finish a book

Ten years ago, the axis of the Earth changed its tilt. The air warmed. All the glacial and polar ice melted. Water filled the land and pushed the people further and further inland. What were once coastal mountains are now islands. What were once fertile valleys are now ocean bays. Humanity is reduced to scattered self-sufficient villages. Their numbers reduced toa tiny fraction of a small fraction of the once teeming masses. Continue reading

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The News From 2Dits Farm: When Good Washing Machines Go Bad

It’s a dangerous business, going through your cellar door. You never know what might need fixing. Case in point: last week, after a few days of beautiful weather which finally allowed me to get into the garden and start the … Continue reading

Posted in Lifestyle, Research, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 11 Comments

Writers Club: The Rabbit Hole

I have a PhD in English. In my research, I focused on the Victorian period. Doing that research allowed me to dig into the reality of the Victorian period and I’d dive in and find myself in a rabbit hole. … Continue reading

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National Geographic: The Greeks: A Very Short Review

By Brenda W. Clough  Museums are a writer’s friends. Never pass one up! Background research is forever. There is nothing like actually seeing a helmet or a cup. And unless you are independently wealthy you are probably not traveling to … Continue reading

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Magic, Mayhem, and Steampunk: An Interview with Julia Verne St. John

I’m delighted to have Julia Verne St. John as my special guest. She’s the author of The Transference Engine, a steampunk novel of magic and machines set in an alternate 1830s London, just out from DAW Books. Here’s the skinny … Continue reading

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Immersive fiction: history and other worlds

An on-going exchange about writing historical novels intersected with my reading of an ARC which the research into houses and weapons and clothing is impeccable . . . but everyone in early 1900s Great Britain sounds American. Occasionally modern American. … Continue reading

Posted in Books and Reading, Culture, fantasy, historical novels, History, Research, science fiction | Tagged , , | 31 Comments