When I’m researching I am filling myself with the events of the historical period and those events clearly leave a mark on the work…the birth of quintuplets in Canada, for instance, or the eruption of a volcano, or the discovery of dinosaur bones. But events happening in the contemporary world of the writer might have an impact on the events woven into the author’s book, as well. In the case of OUT OF THE DUST, I honestly can’t remember current events entering the landscape of the story. There would, of course, be values, knowledge, and experience of the living writer seeping into the decisions he/she makes in designing the story. But Big Picture contemporary events might be difficult, in many cases, to transpose and weave into an historical setting without jarring the reader. Even if the writer deftly altered contemporary events to fit into the historical setting, I think in many cases there would be less of an organic flow than the writer might desire. Certainly, while I was writing SAFEKEEPING, a novel set in the near future, many events happening in the world at the time of the writing were integrated into the story. Perhaps contemporary fiction is more apt to be colored by what is going on in the greater world of the writer, while historical fiction is less likely to be overtly influenced by the author’s world.
“Did historical events that happened in the time that you were writing OUT OF THE DUST have an impact on your work?”