Author Topic: Citing personal family history in historical fiction  (Read 231 times)

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Offline asingrey

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Citing personal family history in historical fiction
« on: May 18, 2014, 08:09 PM »
I have a rather unique story idea that came from family letters that have been passed down from the 1940's. This is a topic that isn't very well-known. How would I go about citing these letters in historical fiction? And how do you cite sources in historical fiction? While the characters lives aren't following the letters exactly and I have changed the names, I am trying to be historically accurate about the setting and circumstances they might have found themselves in.

Offline anita

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Re: Citing personal family history in historical fiction
« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2014, 07:12 AM »
I'm not sure what you mean by citing. Are you talking about within the story or in the bibiliography?

Offline dewsanddamps

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Re: Citing personal family history in historical fiction
« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2014, 07:32 AM »
You don't cite them, you just write the story. But if you provide a bibliography at the end, you would include them and note the date, writer, and recipient. If you don't do a biblio, though, it would be interesting to mention them in an author's note.
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Offline Barbara Etlin

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Re: Citing personal family history in historical fiction
« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2014, 07:35 AM »
You could mention the letters that inspired the book in your Author's Notes page.
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Offline Marissa Doyle

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Re: Citing personal family history in historical fiction
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2014, 08:46 AM »
What Katie said: in historical fiction, bibliographical notes aren't necessary. But an Author's Note explaining the inspiration for the story would be a wonderful thing, especially since it is personal to you and your family.  In mine I usually discuss what is fact and what general aspects of the history in my stories I've fudged a bit to make for easier reading by a modern audience.
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Offline asingrey

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Re: Citing personal family history in historical fiction
« Reply #5 on: May 19, 2014, 08:19 PM »
Awesome! Thanks everyone. I wasn't sure if I needed to cite sources to show I had done my research or not. This was very helpful.