Monday, June 4, 2012

Real Historical Figures in Fiction

First of all, I must say, I cannot believe it is June already! Where did this year go??? As I get older it seems that the years fly by faster and faster... What about you?

Secondly, I must share with you my new cover! THE HIGHLANDER'S REWARD is the first The Stolen Bride Series (6 books planned)--Scottish romance, family saga. I am so excited to introduce you to Magnus and Arbella. This book will release on July 15th as an ebook (Amazon, B&N, I-Books, Sony, Kobo, Smashwords), and then I will make it available in print in the late Fall. So tell me, what do you think of the cover???

(This cover was made especially for me by my dear friend 
and partner in crime, Kim Killion at Hot Damn Designs!)

Now, that I've distracted you with my beautiful cover *g*, let us get back to the topic I chose to write about today: using real historical figures in fiction.

I LOVE to put real historical figures in fiction. It adds a sense of believability and credibility to your story. It also gives readers a sense of the time and what was truly happening. In THE STOLEN BRIDE SERIES, which takes place in the late 13th century, William Wallace makes appearances in each book. I have always found his story to be fascinating as well as that of the fight for Scottish independence from Longshanks aka the English King. His desire to weed the Scots out of their own country was just astounding. Naturally, using this time period as my back drop, my characters will also have to endure what the Scots of that time had to endure.

When adding real figures into your books, it is important to study up on them. For this series, I had to learn about the different battles obviously, but also what William Wallace was like. Even though he only makes brief appearances, I wanted those appearances to be as authentic as possible. He was an impressive man, not only in his intelligence and military strategy but physically. A documentary I watched claimed he was about 6'6 and dreamy...but alas, he is not my hero. Magnus Sutherland from THE HIGHLANDER'S REWARD will hopefully have you all sighing. 

If a reader (such as myself) knows something about the historical figure you use and it doesn't ring true, they will be disappointed. What is the best way to do research on a historical figure? I do several things: books, internet, documentaries. I like to have at least 2 sources saying the same thing. Documentaries are my favorite resource for research and you'll find that on YouTube there are TONS of documentaries from the History Channel.

Well, back to writing!


Eliza Knight is the award-winning, multi-published author of sizzling historical romance and erotic romance. Visit her at her Website, her historical blog History Undressed, her reader blog For the Love of Books, Twitter: @ElizaKnight or Facebook


  1. Ooh, love that cover, and I love Scottish Medieval romance, too! There are almost always real historical figures in my books, and I love to read novels with a strong sense of time and place. Can't wait to get my hands on "The Highlander's Reward" and meet Magnus and Arbella.

  2. Great cover!!! Can't wait to read this one!!!

  3. Awesome cover! Knowing your talent, this series will be a real page turner. I'll be looking out for it! May it bring you good fortune!


  4. Oh yeah, gotta have that one. (Who says covers don't sell books?)