Before I got an agent, before GILT sold, I can't tell you how many times I heard "Historicals don't sell." Or how many agents and editors I heard at conferences tell the room, "Just don't send me any historical fiction."
It can be a little discouraging, I tell you.
But I had to write what I write. I love the process. Digging deep into the history to find as many facts as I can, the puzzle pieces from which I can build a picture. But it's like the picture is merely a pencil drawing (and often an unfinished one at that) and it's up to me to fill in the color and life. I love it.
And others do, too. Apparently there are several agents and editors out there who didn't get the memo about historical fiction. Or maybe, just maybe, times are changing.
SCARLET by A.C. Gaughen debuted on Valentine's Day. It's a retelling of the Robin Hood legend, but steeped in the history of the period. I loved it, and blogged about it over on the YA Muses.
I'm currently reading GRAVE MERCY by Robin LaFevers and wow. Just wow. Gorgeous history, fascinating characters, awesome premise. And a truly kick-butt heroine. Love.
I'm dying to read THE WICKED AND THE JUST by J. Anderson Coats. It's set in Medieval Wales and knowing Coats, is full of wicked quips and unfortunate situations. Plus it's been getting starred reviews. Do I really have to wait a month?
And later this year, expect to VENOM by Fiona Paul. Gorgeous gowns, enigmatic masks and a mystery. Lush and full of visual detail from Renaissance Venice.
Any historical novels you're looking forward to this year? That you've read already and can't wait to read more?