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Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Guest Blog: Kelley Heckart: Research Isn't as Boring as I Thought!

One of my favorite things about writing in ancient time periods is the research. I know that probably makes me sound like a nerd. I won’t deny that I have a nerdy side. But what I enjoy is discovering new information about civilizations and people that I wouldn’t normally find if I wasn’t doing research for a book. This wasn’t always the case for me. Until I actually got down and started doing research, I dreaded the thought of having to do something that sounded like homework to me. In order to write the books I wanted to write, I had to accept research as part of that process. And now I can’t believe all the cool things I’ve come across.

When researching for Daughter of Night, a historical fantasy romance set in ancient Crete and Anatolia, I discovered that the palace in Knossos, Crete had one of the first flushing toilets. This was in 3000 BC. I also discovered that the Hittites in Anatolia, a civilization that flourished from 1600-1200 BC rivaled the Egyptians and Babylonians in wealth and power. They also built advanced cities with clay water pipe systems and grand temples for their gods. The Hittites (Hatti) were the first people to smelt superior iron. I had never even heard of these people until I did the research.

What really excites me is when I discover something that works with my story. This has happened to me more than once and it’s kind of magical in a way to think of a plot line that really happened. For Daughter of Night, I needed a way for the Hittites to come to a mysterious end. In reality, when they battled the Egyptians, some of the Egyptians that were taken prisoner carried a plague that wiped out the Hittite people. In my story this plague happens as a result of the superior iron they smelted—it was cursed.

I realize how nerdy I am, but I can’t help it. I really enjoy picking through textbooks and searching the Internet to research a book I am writing. For me, research is like looking for buried treasure.

Kelley Heckart, Historical fantasy romance author
Captivating...Sensual...Otherworldly

http://www.kelleyheckart.com/
http://kelleysrealm.blogspot.com/
http://twitter.com/CelticChick
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Kelley-Heckart/111838455604

Blurb for Daughter of Night:
Their destiny began in ancient Anatolia.

Becuille is a Daughter of Night and a servant to the Great Goddess, created to wield Her vengeance. Callileon is a prince of the Hatti, who may be the one she was sent to punish.

When love finds them, they are cursed by the gods and surrounded by tragedy, which even the Fates are powerless to change.

Can two mortals fight the will of the gods?

BIO:
Multi-published Arizona author Kelley Heckart brings to life long ago places filled with warriors, bold women, magic, otherworldly creatures and romance. When not writing, she works as an editor/proofreader and practices target archery.

9 comments:

Cara Marsi said...

Kelley, I love learning about ancient civilizations. I can understand about enjoying your research. I love the cover of your book and the premise. I'll check it out. Thanks.

jean hart stewart said...

Sounds like a great book. I love anything that teaches me as it thoroughly entertains me.

vicki batman said...

I love how research tidbits help a story flourish. I researched plumbing for a holiday story. LOL

Judy Baker said...

Great cover. I too enjoy research and sometimes I find myself allowing too my time researching and forgetting to write!

Paris said...

I love research and sometime need to relegate it to the evening hours so that it doesn't interrupt my writing. Your book sounds wonderful!

Kelley Heckart said...

Thanks for having me as a guest at Romance Books 4 Us. And thank you all for the comments. It's easy to get lost in all the research. And I always do more than I actually use in the story.

Kelley

Melissa Keir said...

What a beautiful cover! I'm glad you enjoy research. I like how sometimes it just finds you. As you said, magical times when a certain piece of information comes together for your book!

All the best!

Polly McCrillis said...

I'm with you, Kelley, I love the research process. The only downside to it is that while I'm researching one thing, I get distracted by information I discover that I wasn't looking for! The upside of is it gives me all sorts of ideas for other plots.

Rose Anderson said...

Very interesting.I love research too. Thanks for joining us today, Kelley. Best luck.

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