Next month I will take part, and present, at the inaugural conference of the Historical Writers of America. This is a new organization that represents writers who like to dabble in history, and that includes authors of both fiction and non-fiction books, as well as screen writers, journalists, bloggers, what have you. The conference is taking place from August 19-21 in historic Williamsburg, Virginia.
Williamsburg was founded in 1632 and served as the capital of the Colony of Virginia from 1699 to 1780. In 1776, of course, Virginia was one of the Thirteen Colonies that declared independence from Great Britain which led to the creation of the United States. The restored Historic Area of the community is known as Colonial Williamsburg.
It should be a lot of fun mixing with other writers who share a love of history. My session is The Future of Historical Fiction in a World that Doesn’t Know and will get into the role of historical journalism in writing fiction, and what the future may hold in a world increasingly lackadaisical when it comes to history. What do I mean by lackadaisical?
- Our schools have failed the young by throwing history out the window.
- Not enough is done to preserve our historical heritage.
- A society ignorant of the past can all too easily relive the horrors of the past.
The conference will include sessions on the craft and business of writing, and there will be keynote presentations that pay particular attention to storytelling and to writing historical novels. Anyone who’s into this sort of thing should attend.
And since we’re on the subject, James A. Michener was one who knew something about this and he said: “I’m not sure you are ever a good storyteller unless you are a good listener.”
I’m all ears.