Thursday, 11 June 2009

Characters and countryside


I love the recent change in the countryside. Fields are starting to look as they did in my childhood instead of the barren, weed and flower free zones they have been for so many years. The characters in my wip must have enjoyed flower meadows and hawthorn blossom just as I do. Buttercups are rampant at the moment.
The fact that my characters "live" not far from me, geographically speaking, means that I can easily visualise the places where I have them walking and riding, and I love that. I know a lot of research can be done via the research tools we have available today, but nothing, in my view, beats actually walking the ground you want your characters to tread. And some authors simply do not make use of Google Earth or the wonderful maps we have of this country, and I wish they did.
My current characters are suffering at the moment, and will be for some time to come - but I know I can bring them to a happy conclusion, so I am not weeping copious tears. It is a change of pace I am attempting - not adding more, but going deeper. Though yes, I suppose I am am adding more, for now I have shed the M&B contraints, I can look at subsiduary characters and bring them into play. I started out five years ago with multiple characters, and shed them all to concentrate on the H/h for M&B - now I'm back to where I started!
I am enjoying it. I think. Yes, I know I am. No more excited gasps or electric touches every time the hero walks into the room; now I can try and find out what my characters really think and feel about each other.
It may be something to do with the covers and titles of M&B Historicals these days but I am very reluctant to pick one off the shelves. If the covers continue to scream "erotica" and the titles follow the trend towards the Billionaire's Problem Bride/Her Noble Love kind of simplicity then I won't be buyng any more, which is a pity for there are some authors I enjoy - Cornick, Allen, Maitland - among the "pseudo" historicals ie, those with modern manners. dialogue and plot lines plonked down in Regency times. Yes, I know some people enjoy that sort of story, but they're not for me.

4 comments:

Romy said...

Jen - I'm with you on being a bit of a history purist. I love reading historicals, but too many these days have modern heroines behaving completely out of character for their period. So in terms of Regency I still prefer a good Georgette Heyer over a lot of the more recent books.

Linda Banche said...

I agree with you both. I like a Regency that's true to its time. They're getting harder and harder to find. I wonder why anyone would read a historical if they want a modern story. There are tons of contemporaries if you want modern manners and mores.

Glynis said...

Oh the others beat me to it ;)
I dislike this new style that is being introduced.

Jen Black said...

I'm so glad it's not just me!