On Hist Fic Saturday I am delighted to welcome to Jaffareadstoo
Historical Fiction Writer
Why I write Historical Fiction
I came to this particular genre in a rather convoluted way in that I was asked by my publishers if I would like to come up with an idea for a saga series set sometime in the first part of the twentieth century. I had never really considered writing a novel set in a time other than the present day, but as soon as the idea was put to me, I knew instantly that I wanted to set the series in the throes of the Second World War.
When I was a young girl I remember being fascinated by this particular period, and as soon as I started researching and writing The Shipyard Girls series, that fascination was reignited and as time has gone on, I have loved learning more and more about all aspects of the war. It really is a huge, multi-layered and complex part of our contemporary history and it feels as though the more I read about this extremely important time, the more there is to learn.
By setting The Shipyard Girls in Sunderland I’ve also ended up finding out so much more about the history of my hometown, especially its shipbuilding heritage. I had no idea it was once revered as ‘The Biggest Shipbuilding Town in the World’. I also didn’t realise that Sunderland played such an important part in winning the war by producing ships that were desperately needed for the transportation of food, fuel, and troops. And I certainly had no idea that women worked in the shipyards during both world wars!
The learning and research aspect of writing historical fiction is enthralling, but imaging how it must have been to live through such tumultuous and quite terrifying times is both exciting – and challenging. Living in fear of being bombed out of your own home, surviving on rations, worried about loved ones fighting on the front line... It’s such an emotive time to write about and really draws on all your creative and imaginative reserves.
So, although it was more a case of historical fiction choosing me rather than the other way round, I’ve become hooked!
Nancy Revell is the pen name of writer and journalist Amanda Revell Walton, and has worked for many national newspapers, providing them with hard-hitting news stories and in-depth features. She has also worked for just about every woman’s magazine, writing amazing and inspirational true life stories.
Nancy has recently relocated back to her home town of Sunderland,Tyne & Wear, with her husband Paul and their English Bull Mastiff, Rosie. They live a short walk from the beautiful, award-winning beaches of Roker and Seaburn, within a mile of where The Shipyard Girls series is set. The subject is close to Nancy’s heart as she comes from a long line of shipbuilders, who were well-known in the area.
Twitter @arevellwalton #shipyardgirlsinlove
Arrow Publishing @arrowpublishing
With a brief break in air raids providing some much-needed respite from the war, things are looking up for head welder Rosie, who has fallen head over heels for Detective Sergeant Miller. But how long can their romance last in such uncertain times?
Life remains full of challenges for Gloria, who must face her abusive ex-husband and confront her own guilty conscience about baby Hope’s real father. The secret is tearing her apart but if she admits the truth, she will risk losing everything.
Both women are determined that their love and faith will be enough to keep the most difficult of promises, but nothing is as simple as it seems …