Belle Blackburn is an amazing Historical Fiction author, with one book already out and the sequel releasing in August. I am very excited to present her to you, and I hope that you enjoy the interview that I had with her as well as her books!
Everybody, including her mother, believes that Kate’s father committed suicide. Determined to prove otherwise, Kate sets out on a fascinating and sometimes hysterical journey through antebellum law and medicine. Set in 1860s Nashville and told with a biting wit, determined Kate finally discovers the truth – but at what cost? Will she ruin her own life trying to defend the life of her dead father?
Kate married into a powerful Confederate family for all the wrong reasons, only to discover her true love from the past. In this sequel to The Doctor’s Daughter: Journey to Justice, Kate’s father-in-law locks horns with Andrew Johnson, military governor of occupied Nashville, and he turns their world upside-down. Murder, deception and a missing Union soldier change their lives forever. Kate has made bad choices before. Can she make the right one this time?
1) Why do you write historical fiction?
I like to learn something when I read but who wants to read a dry history book? Tuck that history into a good story and the learning is a fun adventure. A lot of people don’t want to write historical fiction because of the research but I love it. I look for those unusual facts and what can make me actually experience it – how it smelled, felt, tasted.
2) Which authors inspire you?
I was a ravenous reader from an early age but the first thing to inspire me in this genre was when my mother drug my 14-year-old self to the theater to see Gone With the Wind. Up to that point I had thought of history as nothing but a bunch of dates and battles and facts to be endured in school, but this was the first time I thought about the civilians and cities that were affected by war. It was also the Vietnam era and my brother was at boot camp and that overhead scene of all the wounded soldiers laying out in the sun really affected me. So I left the movie and read the book and while it certainly has issues, I have to give Margaret Mitchell credit for opening my eyes to historical fiction. And she was a talented writer. My favorite author is Susan Howatch, a British author who no longer writes. She is brilliant and I learned from her that most all the time you think you know a situation and the people, but the reality is likely completely the opposite. She will write from different people’s viewpoints about the same situation and it has helped me to put myself in other people’s shoes. Diana Gabaldon is also good in combining history and medicine, which I do also.
3) What are you currently working on?
Launching this second book! There is so much work after typing “the end.” I have no idea what is next.
4) What advice do you have for aspiring authors?
Don’t pay attention to all the advice about how to write. You do what works for you. Just like everything else in life, people work differently. Some people are very organized with spreadsheets and plot out everything before they start writing. I am more of a fly by the seat of my pants girl. I know the basic issue and how it ends, maybe a few things in between, start writing and see where it goes. I am also very linear. I start at the beginning and go straight through. Other people do it in segments. And don’t pay attention to what the current trends are. Write YOUR book, not theirs.
5) What do you hope readers will take away from your writing?