To Search or Not to Search
Good morning! Thank you for having me at History Undressed. I’m very happy to be here.
You know, one of the most confounding things about writing a book is the research. Sometimes it’s easy and sometimes I just want to pull my hair out because I can’t find that one tiny bit of information that I’m looking for. I’ve published over twenty historicals from time periods ranging from the Revolutionary War to the Industrial Revolution, so I’ve certainly done my share of research in libraries and online. It took me a few books to realize that with every different time period I went to, I had to do weeks of research before writing the book. Finally, I caught on to what I was doing wrong, and I happily settled into the Regency time period. It’s been many years and nine books now since I completed the major research for the Regency, but I still find that with each book there is some bit of research eluding me and I must go searching.
With the first book, in my Rogues’ Dynasty Series, A Duke to Die For, I wanted my heroine to believe she was cursed. Quite frankly I didn’t know anything about curses. I was asking myself, what kind of powers does a person need to put a curse on someone and how would you know if someone put a curse on you? Anyway, there’s a ton of information out there and I read some very interesting stuff, but I finally decided that there are no hard and fast rules when you are writing about curses. Almost anything goes as long as you make it sound logically to the story you are telling.
In my second book in the Rogues’ Dynasty Series A Marquis to Marry, I wanted to write about a true, famous strand of pearls—The Talbot Pearls. I wanted them to be lost, found, and then stolen. In my author’ note at the end of the book I wanted to tell what actually became of the pearls, but no amount of research, including hiring a professional researcher, checking books, museums’ lists, and old account records of the Countess of Shrewsbury, led to the final resting place of the pearls. My researcher and I finally had to give up and assume the strands of pearls were probably sold or pawned and were eventually broken up to make smaller necklaces. But it was most disheartening not to be able to say for sure what became of the pearls.
And with the third book in the series, An Earl To Enchant, which is currently on sale at your favorite local or online bookstore, I wanted my heroine to have spent several years in India.
One of the most interesting things I discovered was that in India they don’t wear black for mourning and they don’t mourn for months which fit right in with my plot very well. Also young ladies wore brightly colored clothing while during the Regency it was frowned upon for an unmarried lady to dress in bold, vivid colors. And it took more than a day or two of researching for me to figure out the route my heroine would have taken from India to England which I found out would have most likely included a stop in Alexandria, Egypt.
So sometimes it can easy to find out what I need and sometimes very frustrating. Why don’t you tell me, does it frustrate you if an author doesn’t clear up missing facts in her author’s notes?
Leave a comment for your chance to win a copy of Amelia's book! (2 winners, US and Canada only)
The first chapter of my third book in the Rogues’ Dynasty Series An Earl To Enchant is available on my website. I invite you to stop by and give it a try. I’m always happy to hear from readers. Please e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit my website at ameliagrey.com.
AN EARL TO ENCHANT by AMELIA GREY—IN STORES APRIL 2010
He’s determined not to be a hero…
Lord Morgandale is as notorious as he is dashing, and he’s determined no woman will tie him down. But from the moment Arianna Sweet appears on his doorstep, he cannot resist the lure of her fascinating personality, exotic wardrobe, and tempting green eyes…
She has a deadly secret…
Arianna Sweet never imagined the significance of her father’s research until after his untimely death. Now she is in possession of his groundbreaking discovery, one that someone would kill for. She can’t tell Lord Morgandale her secret, but she knows she needs his help, desperately…
About the Author
Winner of the Booksellers Best Award and the Romantic Times Award for Love and Laughter, Amelia Grey's books have been sold in Europe, Russia and China. Married for twenty-five years to her high school sweetheart, she has lived in Alabama, Connecticut, New Hampshire, and now calls Panama City Beach, Florida, home. For more information, please visit www.ameliagrey.com.