Today we have a guest post by Bob O'Connor, who is currently touring with Walker Author Tours to promote his novel A House Divided Against Itself. Enjoy, and be sure to check out his book.
When you are a historical fiction writer, as I am, it is incredibly important that your writing is believable. When I write about the Civil War, a popular subject, I need to make sure my facts are right.You could say “facts” aren’t important in writing fiction; I would disagree. If you don’t know, for instance, if General Robert E. Lee is right or left handed, you had better not include that in your story. Because someone will know.
I am unusual in that I use photographs, battle maps, and newspaper drawings in my book A House Divided Against Itself. The four characters the book follows were all real people who grew up in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. I have included a photograph of each one.
As part of the story, I mention Jack Skelly’s brother Daniel as having received a provisional appointment to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. I include in my book a copy of the actual appointment, signed by Edward Stanton, Secretary of War, to show you that the event really happened.
I talk throughout the book of Wesley Culp’s stature. He was five feet tall. I tell you that his arm was so short that the stock of his gun had to be cut off so his finger could reach the trigger. And that he carved his name in the stock of the gun to help identify that it was his.
I indicate both times when he was captured that he paid a Union guard to look after his firearm because no one else could fire it.
The more I can get you to buy into the actual facts within the story, the more I can trick you into believing those things that I fabricate.
A House Divided Against Itself is available on line at www.boboconnorbooks.com or at amazon.com. It is also available on all e-book formats.