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  • Seminar
  • Online: Zoom
  • Adult (18+)

Technique in Historical Fiction

No Longer Enrolling

  • $150.00 Non-Member
  • $130.00 Member

Class Description

In addition to the goal common to most novels – to tell a gripping story featuring compelling characters – historical fiction aims to transport a reader back in time. In this dynamic, text-based seminar, we’ll examine the strategies some of the great historical novelists of the past and present have used to achieve this special method of time travel. We’ll discuss aspects of research, historical accuracy vs artistic integrity, the concept of the Lost World, how to avoid the dreaded “info-dump” and other common historical fiction pitfalls, historical voice and dialogue, world building, and more. Several brief writing exercises will allow participants to hone practical skills in aspects of the craft of historical fiction writing. Authors examined may include Hilary Mantel, Mary Renault, Peter Carey, Leo Tolstoy, Ursula K. Leguin, Amitav Ghosh, Edith Wharton, Toni Morrison, Gore Vidal, Charles Frazier, Mary Renault, Kenneth Roberts, Bernard Cornwell, Dorothy Dunnett, Michael Ondaatje, Leslie Marmon Silko, James Welch, and/or others.

Scholarships Format/Location

Thanks to the excellent literary citizenship of our donors, scholarships are available for all GrubStreet classes. To apply, click the gray "APPLY FOR SCHOLARSHIP" button. In order to be considered for a scholarship, you must complete your application at least one week before the start date of a class. Please await our scholarship committee's decision before registering for the class. We cannot hold spots in classes, so the sooner you apply, the better. Scholarships cannot be applied retroactively.

For more detailed information about GrubStreet scholarships, including how to contribute to scholarship funds for other students, click here.

This class will take place using Zoom videoconferencing. About 15 minutes before your class is scheduled to begin, you'll receive an email from your instructor with a link to join the class meeting!

Zoom Participation:

Students are not required to turn their camera on, but are encouraged to participate any way they feel comfortable through functions such as the live chat, emoji reactions, and unmuting the microphone. Learn more about using Zoom here.

Zoom Accessibility:

We ask that instructors enable closed captioning and send a transcript of the session after class. You can also enable closed captioning at any time during the meeting. If your instructor forgets to send the transcript, just send ’em an email!