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HF Poll

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Misfit
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Post by Misfit » Wed February 11th, 2009, 12:31 am

[quote=""Julianne Douglas""]The irony is that many lesser known figures in history could become "marquee names" if they were given half a chance![/quote]

Well, er, ahem....... an excellent example of that is our own EC and William Marshall. How many of us who now adore him and put him at #1 on our Hunks in History list had ever heard of him before?

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cw gortner
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Post by cw gortner » Wed February 11th, 2009, 12:39 am

True! And there are still many historical figures who are "known" to people but have not been nearly as well covered in fiction. I sometimes wonder if it's the "known to editors" factor that counts!
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THE TUDOR SECRET, Book I in the Elizabeth I Spymaster Chronicles
THE CONFESSIONS OF CATHERINE DE MEDICI
THE LAST QUEEN


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Margaret
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Post by Margaret » Wed February 11th, 2009, 3:06 am

Thank you so much, Julianne, for doing this poll. The results are really interesting. I voted for a promising plot/story, but there's more to it than that. My budget is limited, so if a novel intrigues me but I'm not familiar with the author, I will almost always check it out from the library rather than buying it. I do, however, browse in bookstores and buy books by authors I haven't read before - because I can dip into the book and see if I like the author's writing style. Oddly enough, I don't do this on the web - though I'm sure it's a good idea for authors to post first chapters. Perhaps I'm just more susceptible when I can hold a book physically in my hand.

I was tempted to check #4, the cover, blurbs, etc., because I must admit to being swayed by cover art. I had a review book sitting on the stack by my desk that I kept putting off, even though the description of the story intrigued me, because the cover art looked amateurish and I couldn't help thinking the writing was likely to be on the amateurish side, as well, if the writer was forced to go with a publisher that didn't have the wherewithal to produce a better cover. Once I read it, I was almost embarrassed to have put it off so long. It was a beautifully written, captivating novel, that certainly deserved a more professionally designed cover! (The book I'm referring to is Relief by L.E. Butler - I've reviewed it at http://www.HistoricalNovels.info/Relief.html.)

I'm certainly much more likely to be intrigued by a book's setting and storyline than by a book about a familiar historical person, though a historical person I haven't read much about can intrigue me, too. It's a negative for me if a novel is about a historical person I've already read about, though that can be overcome if the novel takes a new and unusual angle on that person.
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Madeleine
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Post by Madeleine » Wed February 11th, 2009, 12:21 pm

[quote=""Misfit""]Well, er, ahem....... an excellent example of that is our own EC and William Marshall. How many of us who now adore him and put him at #1 on our Hunks in History list had ever heard of him before?[/quote]

Me too! :o I do agree that the Tudors and Elizabethans have been pretty much "done" though.

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Tanzanite
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Post by Tanzanite » Wed February 11th, 2009, 3:53 pm

[quote=""cw gortner""]True! And there are still many historical figures who are "known" to people but have not been nearly as well covered in fiction. I sometimes wonder if it's the "known to editors" factor that counts![/quote]

When I went to see Alison Weir last night someone asked her a similar type of question. She indicated that she thought books about more obscure historical figures had a better chance of being published 5-7 years ago and that now with the global economy in the shape that it is, publishers want more well known, "marquee" names.

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Julianne Douglas
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Post by Julianne Douglas » Wed February 11th, 2009, 4:36 pm

Well, I'm pursuing the market research on a practical level. In my first novel, all the main characters are fictional, with the exception of a cameo appearance by Catherine de Medici and some references to Clement Marot; in my second novel, 98% of the characters are historical. We'll see which one fares better in the marketplace. By the time I finish #2 later this year, the trend will probably have swung back to fictional characters, but I'll be ready at that point for whatever the market dictates!
Julianne Douglas

Writing the Renaissance

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cw gortner
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Post by cw gortner » Wed February 11th, 2009, 6:45 pm

You go, Julianne! That's the way to do it. When I attended the first HNS Conference in Salt Lake City, I had one indie-published book and three finished manuscripts that had been rejected, in combo, like 10,000 times. But I persisted and when I pitched to Rachel at Crown, she said: "Get an agent, and tell her/him I want to see the one on Juana." It set me on my path, which, while circituous for three more years, eventually landed me a book deal.

I think you've great concepts and you have the savvy; let's connect at HNS and talk more, okay? Bring a sample with you that I can read. ;)
THE QUEEN'S VOW available on June 12, 2012!
THE TUDOR SECRET, Book I in the Elizabeth I Spymaster Chronicles
THE CONFESSIONS OF CATHERINE DE MEDICI
THE LAST QUEEN


www.cwgortner.com

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Julianne Douglas
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Post by Julianne Douglas » Wed February 11th, 2009, 7:40 pm

Awesome! Thanks so much for your interest and help, Christopher. I swear, with you and Michelle pulling for me, along with my indefatigable agent, I'll land that deal yet. :)
Julianne Douglas

Writing the Renaissance

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cw gortner
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Post by cw gortner » Wed February 11th, 2009, 7:42 pm

Oh, yes, you will. Probably just when you've given up all hope and have decided that champion basket weaving should be your new passion :p
THE QUEEN'S VOW available on June 12, 2012!
THE TUDOR SECRET, Book I in the Elizabeth I Spymaster Chronicles
THE CONFESSIONS OF CATHERINE DE MEDICI
THE LAST QUEEN


www.cwgortner.com

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Divia
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Post by Divia » Wed February 11th, 2009, 10:45 pm

[quote=""Julianne Douglas""]Well, I'm pursuing the market research on a practical level. In my first novel, all the main characters are fictional, with the exception of a cameo appearance by Catherine de Medici and some references to Clement Marot; in my second novel, 98% of the characters are historical. We'll see which one fares better in the marketplace. By the time I finish #2 later this year, the trend will probably have swung back to fictional characters, but I'll be ready at that point for whatever the market dictates![/quote]

Interesting. Yes I would like to know the results of that.
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