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Today's guest is author G. S. Wiley who has written both historical and contemporary fiction. I'm pleased to say we share a couple of publishers and anthologies, too! Today the topic is one we've touched on a couple of times this month, research in historical fiction.

Blurb: G.S. Wiley is a writer, reader, teacher, traveller, sometime painter and semi-avid scrapbooker who lives in Canada. G.S. has a fantastic husband, who indulges G.S. in all these pastimes, and makes a mean omelette while he’s at it.


Hi! Thanks to Clare for hosting all of us this month. I've loved reading all the interesting posts and discussions.

Buy it HERE

I'm G.S. Wiley. I hope some of you will recognize me from my work at Torquere Press and Dreamspinner Press, and maybe from my novella “The Nest” which is available at Aspen Mountain Press. Due to a surplus of story ideas and a lack of time, I usually stick to novellas and short stories, although I am working on a novel I'm determined to finish.

While I write a lot of contemporary stories, most of my works are historicals and period pieces. I love researching different eras and locations, and I put a lot of work into making my stories as accurate as possible. Of course, like everyone I make mistakes from time to time. I definitely appreciate the reviewers and readers who write in to correct some anachronism they've found in one of my stories, even though I tend to beat myself up for days about it afterward!

from ww.historycooperative.org

These people are the readers after my own heart, the ones who think that historicals should be historically accurate, at least within some limits. There's no point in having a story set in medieval England, for example, with dialogue no modern person, apart from some scholars and specialists, can read. On the other hand, I've encountered some readers who say they don't care whether a book or story marketed as “historical” is accurate at all. For them, the story is what's important, and it doesn't bother them in the slightest if a Roman gladiator picks up a cell phone or a pair of Elizabethan lovers reach for the Astroglide. What about you? Do you belong to the “the more accurate the better” school, or is that the least of your concerns when you pick up a book?

As readers and writers of gay romance, the concept of accuracy in historical fiction naturally holds additional meaning for us. For much of the last millennium or so, homosexuality has been viewed as a crime, a mental disorder, a physical illness and everything in between. Many historical gay romance writers choose to acknowledge the history of homophobia to a greater or lesser extent in their stories. Some ignore it completely in favour of presenting a fluffier, more escapist view of gay relationships in the past. What do you prefer? Do you like your romances to be pure fun? Or is it important for you that there be some mention of the dangers and difficulties gay couples have encountered, and continue to encounter in many parts of the world today?

I'd be interested to hear your thoughts, on these and any other topics you'd care to discuss. If you'd like to know more about my writing, please see my website or my blog (links below).
Both have links to my currently available stories as well as information on upcoming releases, including a paperback collection of short stories due out soon.

Thanks for reading!

~~G.S. Wiley~~

My Website.
My Blog.



Today's Quote:
"The only way to spend New Year's Eve is either quietly with friends or in a brothel. Otherwise when the evening ends and people pair off, someone is bound to be left in tears." W.H. Auden

Today's Daft Google Searches for 'Clare London':
"A group of midwives like no other" Am I meant to be looking for a career change? :)


Follow this month with Clare (look at the goodies so far...):

Jan 28 : Author Dusk Peterson talks about the highlights and challenges of historical fantasy.‏
Jan 28 : FREE FICTION from me - just a shortie, Give and Take.
Jan 29 : Author Elle Parker talks about the fun of bouncing ideas off the ones she loves.‏

Jan 22 : Author Jordan Castillo Price wonders "what if" she hadn't been a writer?
Jan 23 : Author Syd McGinley asks Is Dr. Fell a Gary Sue?‏
Jan 24 : Author Angela S. Stone tells us about her 'Bunnies' and offers Free Fiction.‏
Jan 24 : Author Lori Toland tells us about the rock 'n' roll of her new release.‏
Jan 25 : Author Rowena Sudbury talks about inspiration and its spark in her fiction.‏
Jan 26 : Author Anne Brooke shares her new release "A Stranger's Touch".‏
Jan 27 : Author Chrissy Munder suggests we examine our assumptions.‏

Jan 15 : Jen of Well Read savours the memory of food, and seeks it in her fiction!
Jan 16 : Author Mel Keegan tells us why we should all be visiting the GLBT Bookshelf.
Jan 17 : Author Cassandra Gold discusses the wonderful world of the romance sub-genre.
Jan 18 : Author Wren Boudreau asks "Who am I...and am I okay with it?"
Jan 19 : Author Jenna Hilary Sinclair confesses her addiction...to writing!
Jan 20 : Author Dakota Flint discusses the fascination of the Epilogue.
Jan 21 : Author Janey Chapel treats us to pictures of her favourite kink!

Jan 08 : Jessewave wonders - tongue in cheek - where the less shiny guys are!
Jan 09 : Anne Cain shares her art and encourages a show and tell!
Jan 10 : My latest release Upwardly Mobile is out at Amber Quill today.
Jan 11 : Author Lee Rowan discusses why love should not be a garotte.
Jan 12 : Author Jaime Samms asks if readers prefer short or long stories.
Jan 13 : Author Erastes explains why her submissions keep aiming for the stars!
Jan 14 : Author Daimeryan Rei describes the rewards of writing both fan and original fiction.

Jan 01 : The New Year brings the release of the Immortal Fire anthology IN PRINT.
Jan 02 : author Chrissy Munder asks if current affairs in fiction is delightful or just dates us.
Jan 03 : author Madeleine Urban describes how her characters hijacked her brain.
Jan 04 : author Theda Black's inspiration reaches from a bionic penis to the power of Pan.
Jan 05 : author Josh Lanyon shares some exceedingly good books with us.
Jan 06 : author K. Z. Snow questions what all the fuss is about authors 'making shit up'.
Jan 07 : Josie aka 1more_sickpuppy compares her life and friends online and off.

Want to grab a day to pimp, pose or pontificate? Email me at clarelondon11 @ hotmail.com and I'll happily find you a space ♥

NOTE: most pictures chosen by me and credited where known, others may be used without direct permission, please contact me with any queries/concerns.



( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 30th, 2010 05:28 pm (UTC)
I like the stories I read to have a sensible touch of realism, just enough that it allows me to suspend belief on items that shouldn't (like extracting DNA from fossils). I strongly dislike total disregard for the period the writing is using in the story. History can be twisted somewhat, or realigned to fit in minor ways, but don't try to sell me on a totally gay London in the Elizabethan times. Not going to happen.

As for the 'fluffier' historical stories, I don't mind suspending belief in that gay men could live openly with their partners or at least are free to pursue others, as long as I know going in. I also don't mind having real historical figures being cast in a light not ever perceived before. The best I've seen of this, so far, is Michael Thomas Ford's "Changing Tides". One of the protags is setting out to prove John Steinbeck and his friend Ed Ricketts were lovers, and the unpublished Steinbeck manuscript he has in his possession proves it. Ford does such an excellent job of it, I still half-way believe that the two were.

BTW, I absolutely adore "The Nest" and need to go hunt up other stories you've written.
Jan. 30th, 2010 11:46 pm (UTC)
I like the stories I read to have a sensible touch of realism. Ooh, I like that. I'm borrowing that for my comment. LOL.

I feel it applies to both historical and non historical. I have to admit there's a lot of contemporary stories that could do with a bit of sensible realism (can we say ick to some of the things I've read used as lube? I don't know about most guys but there is no way anyone would get near me with some of that stuff).
Jan. 31st, 2010 05:24 am (UTC)
I tend to like historical stories in which the love story is the subplot or parallel plot rather than the major focus, and as a result, any societal opposition to that love would also play a secondary role or parallel role in the story. But as far as realism is concerned . . . yes. I enjoy history, so I like a historical story to be historical.
Feb. 1st, 2010 02:19 pm (UTC)
Late to the party as usual. I am not a huge historical fan, yes, I read some and I usually only end up reading really great ones because I am choosy I will only tackle those that friends recommend in a big way. (Including some of yours. :-) Part of the reason why is the issue of the danger surrounding same sex relationships. I get a bit weary of the angst and drama of hiding it and worrying if you are going to end up in jail. They spend more time freaking out sometimes than figuring out if they actually like each other. LOL I'm generalizing of course but in a nutshell I prefer my characters to think about each other more than worrying about whether they'll end up dead (although I suppose crime stories are a bit different).

But if I do read one I expect it to be somewhat accurate. However as a non-historian I don't have a clue most of the time if you are telling me facts or fiction. I don't know what they ate or wore generally a hundred years ago. Well, obviously I know they didn't have zippers and sneakers in 1625, but were buttons made of wood or metal? Beats me and in the grand scheme of a romance for me I don't care. And yes, don't have them running around saying "cool" and "dude" but again, I'm one of those readers who won't know unlike some who adore the genre who will call you on the fact that red shirts were NEVER worn by men who do X. :-)

So I guess in my historicals I prefer a little fudging on the facts. I'm not looking for a gaytopia, but perhaps it's not the scariest place in the world either for two men to have a relationship. Does that defeat the purpose of an historical? Perhaps, but luckily for authors there are tons of readers who adore the grittier side. Something for everyone. :-)
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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