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Historical facts in fantasy

 
Dobrin Hristov
(@hexador)
New Member
Posts: 3

Hello everyone,

I am currently writing a short fantasy story in a historical setting. I am using some historical names of people and places, as well as events, and wondering if there is anything inherently wrong with that in the context of the competition.

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Topic starter Posted : June 14, 2022 2:10 am
pdblake
(@pdblake)
Silver Member
Posts: 252

I wouldn't have thought so, just be sure to get your facts right 😉

R:6 HM:5 SHM:2
My Blog

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Posted : June 14, 2022 9:23 am
DoctorJest
(@doctorjest)
Silver Star Member
Posts: 592

I don't believe there would be a problem with this. It anchors things in a time and a place, and there's no conflict I can think of that might arise from it. Historical fantasy, or alternate history, are definitely valid genres of fantasy, and the Contest is open to them all.

DQ: 0 / R: 0 / RWC: 0 / HM: 10 / SHM: 5 / SF: 0 / F: 1
Entered for Q2.V39 and Q3.V39
Last result: SHM for Q1.V39
Revised SHM ('Ashwright') at PodCastle

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Posted : June 14, 2022 9:25 am
Morgan
(@morgan-broadhead)
Silver Member
Posts: 282

You may want to go back and redact some of the details in your post. Revealing too much information about your story here in the forums may spoil the anonymity and, thus, disqualify you. Unless of course this is a story you won’t be submitting to the contest, then you’re probably fine. 

"Writers WRITE. And they finish what they start."
- Chuck Wendig
Drop me a line at https://morganbroadhead.com
SFx1
HMx1
Rx4

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Posted : June 14, 2022 11:36 am
Dobrin Hristov
(@hexador)
New Member
Posts: 3

@morgan-broadhead I edited it. Thank you for telling me.

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Topic starter Posted : June 14, 2022 1:51 pm
David Hankins
(@lost_bard)
Silver Member
Posts: 327

So far as I can tell, there is no problem with using genuine historical facts and people. Rebecca Treasure’s published finalist in V38 was a historical fantasy. It didn’t revolve around a primary historical character (i.e. Napoleon wasn’t her protagonist), but she used genuine events and characters from the Napoleonic wars to build a historically and culturally accurate fantasy (and a freaking good story). 

V38 Q2: HM
V38 Q3: HM
V38 Q4: SHM
V39 Q1: HM
V39 Q2: Submitted
V39 Q3: WIP
Published Stories:
"A Properly Spiced Gingerbread" in DreamForge Anvil Volume 7
"The Last Quest of Corbin the Coward" in Factor Four Magazine

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Posted : June 14, 2022 7:55 pm
Martin L. Shoemaker
(@martin-l-shoemaker)
Platinum Member Moderator
Posts: 1909

We have little history with Jody yet, but Dave loved specificity. Historical figures add specificity.

General advice is to avoid disparaging living people or people with living heirs. Disparagement is in the eye of the beholder, of course; and some people are fair game for disparagement. Say as many disparaging things as you want about dead world leaders of the past. People may dispute your claims, but they won't sue you for them.

http://nineandsixtyways.com/
Tools, Not Rules.
Martin L. Shoemaker
3rd Place Q1 V31
"Today I Am Paul", WSFA Small Press Award 2015, Nebula nomination 2015
Today I Am Carey from Baen
The Last Dance (#1 science fiction eBook on Amazon, October 2019) and The Last Campaign from 47North

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Posted : June 14, 2022 9:12 pm
czing
(@czing)
Silver Member
Posts: 258

As a reader I LOVE when real historical people and events are included. And as a note if you can make it so you make the first reference kind of a 'teaser' so that folks who like history will probably easily guess who it is or what event is coming up and then shortly later you reveal the who or event it gives readers that thrill of figuring it out before it is fully revealed. But that is just my 2 cents about what I like when reading something placed in a historical period. I think it still gives the specificity mentioned above but adds in an extra layer for the reader.

v36 Q1, Q3 - HM; Q4 - R
v37 Q1 - R; Q2 - SHM; Q4 - HM
v38 Q1 - HM; Q2 - SHM; Q3 - HM; Q4 - HM
v39 Q1 - SHM; Q3 - Pending

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Posted : June 21, 2022 6:27 pm
Morgan
(@morgan-broadhead)
Silver Member
Posts: 282

A great title always helps too. Thinking here about a classic…Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. 

"Writers WRITE. And they finish what they start."
- Chuck Wendig
Drop me a line at https://morganbroadhead.com
SFx1
HMx1
Rx4

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Posted : June 22, 2022 5:01 am
David Hankins, G.L. Bertram, PenMark and 1 people liked
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