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November 7, 2017

I always enjoy behind-the-scenes or anatomy-of-a-scene features for movies and TV shows. Now that my new historical novel GALLOWAY’S GAMBLE  has been out for a while, and some folks have actually read it, here’s a short look at the origins of 3 personal-favorite scenes:

1) Chapter 9 – The...

October 6, 2017

As noted in an earlier blog, historical fiction needs to be accurate, and feel truthful. That’s why historical novelists often anchor a fictional story with real history, using actual places and events, and real people and the things they (reportedly) said.

Early in the writing of GALLOWAY...

September 27, 2017

Until I started writing historical fiction, I had no idea research was so much fun. Some research was specific – I needed to know when it first became possible to travel by railroad from St. Louis to Austin, Texas. Other research familiarized me with subjects I didn’t know much about, but...

September 20, 2017

When I started writing my new historical novel GALLOWAY’S GAMBLE, I wanted to weave music into the

story. Music has been a natural part of human existence ever since some cave person first figured out how to whistle a bird tune. It has the magical power to instantly conjure a place and tim...

September 13, 2017

Blurbs: those short, enthusiastic quotes that appear on book covers. As defined by NPR journalist Colin Dwyer in a 2015 story, a blurb is “a bylined endorsement from a fellow writer — or celebrity — that sings the praises of a book's author right on the cover.”

Blurbs don’t materialize out...

September 5, 2017

Fun thing about writing historical fiction: it’s the perfect excuse to visit historical places. My quest – time travel! (Or, at least, a close approximation…) 

When Susan and I planned recent trips to Arizona and Wyoming, we started with national parks – Grand Canyon and Yellowstone – as o...

August 22, 2017

Canadian singer-songwriter Gordon Lightfoot has told the story of how he got the idea for his 1974 hit song "Carefree Highway" from the name he saw on a road sign, which he jotted on a slip of paper – and almost left behind in a rental-car glove compartment in Phoenix, Arizona. Turned out...

August 7, 2017

65,000!  That’s approximately how many books have been written about the Civil War. Not surprising, considering that it was, is and may always be the central defining event in American history. Made  

inevitable by the dark compromises struck at the birth of our nation, the regional and ra...

July 19, 2017

I believe you should absolutely be able to tell something important about a book by its cover. If you can’t, it’s a lousy cover.

Back in 1981, when I saw the cover for my very first novel, STAR TREK: THE COVENANT OF THE CROWN, I

was disappointed. I thought it was generic and unimaginative....

July 5, 2017

Before cars, horses were ubiquitous . . . or were they? Not long ago, my Minnesota friend Sally Skjaret and her husband Tom had this good-natured argument: Tom (from rural Minnesota) contended that the majority of Americans would’ve owned horses in 1900. Sally (from Connecticut) disagreed...

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September 13, 2017

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Anatomy of a scene (3 scenes, actually) . . .

November 7, 2017

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BLOG: Between the Lines

Thoughts on Writing, History & Life's Bits & Pieces

 All website material © 2017 by Howard Weinstein 

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