Friday, April 27, 2012

The Mystery of History with Guest Blogger: B.J. Scott

 Welcome romance author BJ Scott 
back to the Book Boost today!
She's here to discuss historical romance and here's what she had to say...

Fact or Fiction?

As a writer of historical romance, I am often faced with the dilemma of how much of my book should be based on real fact, if any. Being a history buff, it is hard to keep the desire to share with my readers under control. While the intent is not to rewrite history, using actual historical facts and events add flavor to a historical romance. It also offers some very interesting information about the events of time, lifestyle and challenges facing a heroine and hero in a specific era.

The line between historical fiction and historical romance is a fine one and while they vary with each publishing house, editorial guidelines are strict. In a historical romance, the love and passion between the hero and heroine drive the story. The historical facts add flavor. In a historical fiction, the events drive the story and the romance, if any, between a hero and heroine while it enhances the story, it is not the main focus.

Whether you write historical romance or historical fiction, make sure your facts are well researched and accurate. Never assume your reader will not know the difference, because most of them will. Fans of this genre are often well versed in all aspects of the time period. You are on a much tighter rein with historical fiction and the creative license with historical romance is greater, but the onus is on the author to make sure they write a story that depicts the era in a true light.

So how much history is desirable in a historical romance? That depends on the author and the editor. Together they will ensure the reader is offered the perfect blend without making them feel they are in a history class. If you get too technical or caught up on the facts, and your romance goes by the wayside, you will lose your readers. Give them just enough facts to entice and entertain and you will have a fans that will relate to your characters and will be looking for your next book.

A Note from the Book Boost:  I've tried my hand at writing historical fiction and find it to be the most difficult genre as an author.  On the other hand, as a reader, there are few books I like more than a well crafted historical full of rich detail and a strong"take me back in time" vibe.  I commend you for the work you've done here.


Faced with an abhorrent betrothal, Cailin Macmillan flees her father’s castle and quickly learns that a woman traveling alone in Medieval Scotland is an easy target for ruthless English soldiers.

When Highland patriot Connor Fraser comes to her aid, his steadfast dedication to king and country is challenged by his overwhelming desire to protect Cailin—even if he must marry her to do so.

Accused of murdering one of her attackers and determined to rely on her own resourcefulness, Cailin dresses as a lad, intent on seeking refuge at the camp of Robert the Bruce. Can she elude an enemy from her past—a vindictive English lord bent on her utter demise—or will she fall prey to his carnal intent and be executed for a crime she did not commit?

Want More B.J.?

With a passion for historical romance, history in general, and anything Celtic, B.J. always has an exciting work in progress. Each story offers a blend of romance, adventure, suspense, and, where appropriate, a dab of comic relief. Carefully researched historical facts are woven into each manuscript, providing a backdrop from which steamy romance, gripping plots, and vivid characters—dashing alpha heroes and resourceful, beguiling heroines you can’t help but admire—spring to life.

Following a career in nursing and child and youth work, B.J. married her knight-in-shining-armor, and he whisked her away to his castle by the sea. In reality, they share their century-old home in a small Canadian town on the shore of Lake Erie with three dogs and a cat. When she is not working at her childcare job, on her small business, or writing, you will find her reading, camping, or antique hunting.

Visit her on the web here:

Pick up a copy of her book today!  Click here.


Bev Irwin / Kendra James said...

Great post, BJ. History is always so intriguing. And researching it always brings up ideas for another good story.

Ann Montclair said...

Historical fiction is a passionate pursuit, and you do it well, BJ.

B.J. Scott said...

Thanks for stopping by Bev and Ann

Always great to see you and appreciate your support

Casey Wyatt said...

Nice interview BJ! I love history and devour as much as I can. But, I've never thought of writing a historical. There are others, like you, who are much better suited for it! Happy writing :)

B.J. Scott said...

Thanks for stopping by Casey

I enjoy writing paranormal and romantic suspense too, but historical will always be my first love.

Unknown said...

Great post. I love reading historical fiction. It takes a lot of talent to write it, which you definitely have. I loved Highland Legacy and can hardly wait to read Highland Quest.

B.J. Scott said...

Thanks Janna

Glad you enjoyed the book and hopefully the sequel will be out this summer. Just finishing it up before sending it off for edits ;)

Mandi Casey said...

Hi B.J.! I love all things historical and I agree, you have mastered the craft :) congrats! Can't wait for more :)

B.J. Scott said...

thanks for stopping in Mandi

Donna Shields said...

I love historicals. Especially when the heroine is 'going against the grain' so to speak.

B.J. Scott said...

thanks for dropping by Donna. Great to see you.

Cailin certainly is not your typical subservent Scottish lass.

Firetulip said...

Hi B.J.

Great interview. History is captivating. Even if many didn't think so sitting in the history class through the school and thinking why do I need to know all of this, just bunch of dates and names and places. I too am big fan of historical and if there's a paranormal aspect, even better. My second novel is historical and I learn writing historical is whole different beast to write. And I always throw in a pinch of history in all of my books.

Sandy L. Rowland said...

I adore historical fiction, but am not ready to go there yet as an author. Thank you for being brave enough to tackle it.

And I think your cover is perfect.

Miriam Newman said...

Ah, there is no genre for me like historical and I am so happy that you do it so well.

Alexa said...

I say this all the time. I admire historical romance writers. I thought about writing an historical once, got about 20 pages written and was COMPLETELY overwhelmed with all the research I was going to have to do. I'll stick to contemporary romantic suspense!

B.J. Scott said...

Thanks Firetulip for stopped by to say hello.

Actually my fav subject in school was history. Still can't get enough and am fortunate my hubby loves it to. We love antiquing, visiting museums, historical sites and reinactments. I used to work at a historical village for a while and have done both 1812 and civil war re-enacting and love it.

Yes, writing history can be a bit overwhelming and with the onus of keeping fact accurate it is a challenge. But one I love and accept with open arms. :)

B.J. Scott said...

Hi Sandy,

Not so much brave as a labor of love. Can never get enough historical fiction so figured it was the prefect genre for me to write.

B.J. Scott said...

Thanks for dropping in Miriam and I hear you about historical romance.Love it,love it, love it. Especially ones set in medieval Scotland.

B.J. Scott said...

Hi Alexa,
writing historical is not everyone's cup of tea but I love the research and being able to share some tidbit of info that a reader might not know. I am sure your contemporary are wonderful and as they say, write what you love and feel most comfortable with and it will show ;)

B.J. Scott said...

Thanks to all who stopped by today and as a token of appreciation am drawing a name for a pen and bookmark ;)
The winner will be contacted.