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I have been inspired by a historical figure

(11 Posts)
SugarSkyHigh Sun 28-Aug-11 10:18:17

who does not have THAT much written about them although she is well known enough in some circles. Her story / possible story intrigues me; who she was as a person and also from a feminist angle - that she would be more well known if she were a man.

There should be a film about her. But I can't make a film or write a screen play. I do write (for pleasure) and have done for a very long time, however. Would it be feasible to write a semi-fictional story around this character? Is this "done" - or even ethical? Can anyone kindly give me their advice, however brief? TIA

DrGruntFotter Sun 28-Aug-11 10:31:43

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DrGruntFotter Sun 28-Aug-11 10:32:51

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ImperialBlether Sun 28-Aug-11 14:05:38

I think you'd have more luck writing a novel than a screenplay and hope that the film rights are bought.

SugarSkyHigh Sun 28-Aug-11 23:32:09

Thank you - it's great to get feedback of any kind. and I didn't notice any garbled repetitions, GruntFotter!

I am thinking I could write from the point of view of the woman - perhaps an imaginary diary. There would have to be a very strong sense of place for it to work - not sure how that would come across in a diary format. I think I need to do a creative writing course before I even think about starting this project!

I guess all the research would take a long long time too. I would have to go to the area where the woman lived and worked, in order to immerse myself in the atmosphere etc. Hmmmmm <deep thinking>

DrGruntFotter Mon 29-Aug-11 09:53:18

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SugarSkyHigh Mon 29-Aug-11 21:43:11

will definitely explore that, DrGF! Have you written anything / in the process of writing anything?

imperialBlether - my DH reckons that's like hoping to win the lottery. but let's face it, it could be you! grin

DrGruntFotter Mon 29-Aug-11 22:18:59

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ImperialBlether Mon 29-Aug-11 22:27:11

SugarSkyHigh, I'm determined that WILL be me!

OP, you don't need a creative writing course. You need to work out the plot, first, scene by scene, and the points of view. Then tie in the setting to the scenes. If you are stuck on any historical fact (eg what did they drink? How can I write this scene without knowing whether they are drinking tea or coffee?) then just write it and leave X where the drink should be. So, "he placed his X on the Y and said..."

Just write the bloody book, as one agent said to a writer I met.

wordfactory Wed 31-Aug-11 21:27:25

I'm not a hist ficker usually, though I did write a radio play set in two historical periods.

I'm sure my true hist ficker mates would say emmerse yourself in the period first and then begin work. However, probably because I'm a thriller novel writer, I approached it first to see if there was a story . Stories and themes are IMHO timeless so can be tested in any period.

Then when I'd assured myself this wasn't a dead end, I emmersed myself. Then I wrote the thing.

MurielTheActor Thu 01-Sep-11 18:50:33

There is a long tradition of the fictionalising of real people events.
A Pin to See the Peepshow by F Tennyson Jesse and Fred and Edie by Jill Dawson are two examples of the fictionalising of the same story - and both very different!
I would say the rule is if you're lucky enough to be inspired at all then go with it and do it.
I've done it but changed names and made sure to say that I'd taken great liberties with the actual events!

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