…yes, Authors… getting the detail right IS the way to go… and it feels good…

…I’m not among the legions of the Grammar Police, recognising that this ol’ Jurassic is as likely as the next quill-scraper to screw up linguistically sum’where along the way… nit-picking is for… well, for people who have a ‘thing’ about nits, I s’pose… but, the good is in trying, I’m told… so try I do… in particular, I’m referring to stuff in my novels… the content detail, Mabel… I choose not to give the kinda in-depth agonising nuance by agonising nuance of bullet size, calibre, velocity and skull-splitting impact speeds that appear in tomes by, fr’example, the late Tom Clancy… rote lists like that do NUTHIN for me as a reader, and that’s only in my not so ‘umble opinion… yeez are all entitled to yer own, of course… and yeez won’t hear me denying yeez that right… what I’m more interested in is getting facts as accurate as possible… which harks back to the depth and quality of research that we scribblers engage in… with Uncle Google, and Cousin Yahoo, more or less replacing dear old Auntie Encylopaedia Britannica, there is scant excuse for not at least trying to verify stuff in yer masterpieces…


…other methods are available to yeez… and I’m delighted to tell yeez of an encouraging interlude for me the other day… my current WURK-in-Progress, KILLER CITY, has some action around Manchester Airport in England… I wanted to have a slug of it happening in the wee small hours of the morning, and needed to know for accuracy’s sake whether or not the Airport had night-time flying restrictions… I found a web page for the Manchester Airport Authority, in which they included a ‘Queries’ page… mostly intended, it must be said, for parking queries and travellers’ experiences and/or complaints…


…undaunted, I fired off a question about the night-time stuff… within two days, they responded magnificently with a comprehensive coupla pages, detailing everything I wanted to know… it will boil down to only a line or two in the novel, but how pleased I am to know that I will have it right.. and hats off to the splendid customer relations guys at Manchester Airport… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!



Filed under Blether, Scribbling & Stuff

10 responses to “…yes, Authors… getting the detail right IS the way to go… and it feels good…

  1. Oh, that brings back memories. Mom and dad saved up to get me Britannica for my birthday in third grade since I’d outgrown my kids’ set. I can remember the awesome smell of the new books and sitting cross legged on the floor and having the world go away when I flipped open the nearest book to ‘England’. Not sure how long I sat there going page by page, but when I unburied my nose, it was dark outside. Seeing your well researched photo brings it all back. Thank you, sir. You and my day.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Reblogged this on Author P.S. Bartlett and commented:
    As a writer of historical fiction, I understand that although yes, I write fiction, that doesn’t mean I can just fabricate any and everything that happened during the eras in which my stories take place. It’s imperative that I use multiple sources to find my information–mainly history books and documentaries. I spend countless hours reading, looking at maps, watching videos and chatting with another author friend to get those facts straight. Two nights ago, I was learning about medicine (and I use that term loosely) during the 17th and 18th century. Our readers are brilliant and they will spot BS a mile away so making that call, emailing that source or at least looking for the facts that matter in the background–and sometimes the forefront of the story, only make it that much more real, for lack of a better word.
    Another author friend who also writes historical fiction of the pirate variety like myself, even interviews sailing folks, historians and the like in order to create a more authentic story, fiction or not. My favorite story is when she spoke to an authority on shark attacks in order to make a scene she was writing more realistic. Bloody brilliant I’d say! 😉
    As always, excellent advice Seumas!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I agree with you on not finding lists at all attractive but accuracy enhances the reading. Mostly one might not notice it, but that’s the beauty of it. Things that seem effortless usually aren’t. And as you comment research is easier these days…

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Good advice, Seumas. I read a blog about research that said another thing an author can do is get onto a chat room on Facebook and/or Google+ and ask if anyone on there can answer a question for you. 🙂


  5. laurie27wsmith

    Don’t know if you ever read anything by western author J T Edson Seumas but he was very big on descriptions. I must have read nearly all his work.


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