5 Responses

  1. Michael Jensen
    Michael Jensen at |

    Excellent look at historical novels and what goes into them. As for what was used for lube in the past, in my novel Man & Beast the answer is …. bear fat!

    1. kajeharper
      kajeharper at |

      And the bears are nervous… cool – an answer I had not yet seen. That’s the American frontier era, right? Humans are nothing if not resourceful.

  2. araminta
    araminta at |

    I love reading historic fiction, particularly if it is based on true events. I recently learned about a group of artists who lived in Broadway, in The Cotswolds in the late 19th Century. Reading between the lines, it seems that many of them were gay, although often married with children. They included Henry James, John Singer Sargent, Oscar Wilde and Francis Davis Millet (Mark Twain was his best man). Millet later lived with his long term partner, Archibald W Butt, and they died together on the Titanic. There is a Butt-Millet memorial fountain in Washington DC celebrating their bravery during the sinking. They are believed to have insisted that the lifeboats be only for women and children and were supposed to have stood by the Captain as the ship sank. I would love to read a book based on this group of people, so if you would consider this Kaje I would be front of the queue to read it!

  3. Elin Gregory
    Elin Gregory at |

    Thanks for the mention, Kaje. Re: Polari, it was something many of us 50s kids grew up with without even realising we knew it. There was a long running radio show that featured two characters who used the lingo to great effect. They frequently said completely outrageous things, especially when you consider that the show went out in the prime spot at 2pm on Sunday afternoon. We used to listen to it as we washed dishes after Sunday lunch. The language was deeply coded and sometimes filthy but the script approval team either didn’t know what it meant or couldn’t admit to knowing due to the laws of the time. For instance, during a discussion about piano playing, Julian claimed that Sandy was ‘displayed astonishing manual dexterity on the cottage upright’ which actually refers to getting a handjob in a public urinal, rather than playing an upright piano in a small house. I adored Julian and Sandy and here’s a little sample. Caution in watching the video – it’s a cyclist headcam and is a bit vertiginous. https://youtu.be/OZL4rTEWU5c

  4. April Lee
    April Lee at |

    OH! You mentioned Raised By Wolves!!! One of my all-time favorite m/m series!!!!

    I think historicals become so when the period setting is important, when the details pinpointing the time play a part in the story, even if it’s just background and setting. Basically, it’s a story that’s not just set at some arbitrary date that’s vaguely contemporary and can sort of slide around in time. Maybe?

    (The 80s!!! SO not historical to ME… They seem just like yesterday!!! But, OK… so I’m getting old…! WWII doesn’t even seem like historical to me, but OK…) :{


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