Historical Tidbits

Daily Living in the Middle Ages by Sarah Woodbury

Posted by on Sep 11, 2017 in Featured Book, Historical Tidbits, Medieval Great Britain | 1 comment

One of my readers asked me the other day about what daily life was like. My books are about the few days of adventure in between daily living—which is of course the point. When a character is time traveling back and forth to a medieval world, the bits in between, where life happens, are far less exciting. The tapestry is The Triumph of Death, or The 3 Fates, a Flemish tapestry (probably Brussels, ca. 1510-1520), located now in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. Depicted are the three fates: Clotho, Lachesis and Atropos, who spin, draw out and cut the thread of Life, and in this tapestry...

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Fact Vs. Fiction: Getting It Right (Even When You’re Making It Up) by CiJi Ware

Posted by on Jul 31, 2017 in Featured Book, Historical Research, Historical Tidbits | 6 comments

For twenty years before I started writing novels, I was a radio and television broadcaster in Los Angeles, having worked for all three national networks and the local PBS station during that “other” career. I find, eleven novels and two nonfiction books later, that the skillset I acquired in that former chapter of my life has stood me in remarkably good stead, whether I write contemporary or historical fiction. Regardless of the genre, nothing annoys readers more than to see a misstatement or outright mistake in a book dealing with a subject that the purchaser knows about. Even worse, is to...

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The Anarchy by Sarah Woodbury

Posted by on May 29, 2017 in Featured Book, Historical Tidbits, Medieval Great Britain | Comments Off on The Anarchy by Sarah Woodbury

Stephen de Blois came to London, and the people received him and hallowed him to king on midwinter day. But in this king’s time was all dissension, and evil, and rapine; for against him rose soon the rich men who were traitors. Then was England very much divided. Some held with the king and some with the empress; for when the king was in prison, the earls and the rich men supposed that he would never more come out, and they settled with the empress, and when the king was out, he heard of this, and took his force, and beset her in the tower. By such things, and more than we can say, we...

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Heroic Fantasy in Dark Age Wales by Sarah Woodbury

Posted by on May 8, 2017 in Ancient Wales, Featured Book, Historical Tidbits | 1 comment

He is a king, a warrior, the last hope of his people—and the chosen one of the side… Writing heroic fantasy set in dark age Wales combines the need for research typical of historical fiction with the world building of mainstream fantasy. That’s partly because it brings in the world of the sidhe—the gods of the Celtic world—but also because there’s a true paucity of information about the early middle ages in Wales. My dark age historical fantasy series, The Last Pendragon Saga, tells the story of Cadwaladr ap Cadwallon (Cade) who was a real king of Gwynedd. His father, Cadwallon, was...

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About Finding Joaquin by Steve Bartholomew

Posted by on Apr 24, 2017 in 19th Century U.S., Featured Book, Historical Research, Historical Tidbits | Comments Off on About Finding Joaquin by Steve Bartholomew

There’s a razor-thin line between history and fiction. Scholars used to think the Iliad was all made up, until the actual ruins of Troy were found. What fascinates me about the bandit Joaquin Murietta is that no one really knows how much of his story is true. My book Finding Joaquin is not the first fictional narrative about this man. In fact, one of the first novels written in California was inspired by his life. This was The Life and Adventures of Joaquin Murieta, by John Rollin Ridge. Note the difference in spelling of the bandit’s name. There are a number of other variations,...

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Combat Casualties and Battlefield Medicine through the Ages by Lloyd Lofthouse

Posted by on Apr 10, 2017 in 20th Century US, Featured Book, Historical Tidbits | Comments Off on Combat Casualties and Battlefield Medicine through the Ages by Lloyd Lofthouse

It has been estimated that the Roman Empire’s Legions, over a nine-hundred year period, lost an average of one-thousand troops annually from combat. When we compare modern combat deaths, this is amazing. Though the number of killed and wounded in the U.S. Civil War (1861 – 1865) is not known precisely, most sources agree that the total number killed added up to an average of 160,000  – 175,000 combat deaths annually. In the Korean War, the US lost an average of 18,081 from combat deaths annually. In the Vietnam War, that number dropped to 3,063. In Desert Storm (1990-1991) there were only...

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