Lauren Baratz-Logsted is a talented and prolific writer whose next book is never anything like her last. Her latest book is a historical novel for the young adult reader, The Education of Bet, about a “16-year-old girl in Victorian England who impersonates a boy in order to get a proper education.”
Lauren has embarked on a One Question Blog Tour to celebrate, and today it’s CvilleWord’s turn to pop the question:
CvilleWords: Lauren, when you write a novel with a historical setting, how much research do you do, when do you do the bulk of your research, what are your favorite sources and research aids, and how do you organize the information? (That’s really four questions, I cheated.)
Lauren: HA! OK, here goes:
It all depends on the demands of the specific book. When I wrote the adult novel Vertigo, I read several books on Victorian design, consulted Timelines of History to see what significant events happened in each year covered in the book, and read several more books on the history of the British penal system. For the YA novel The Twin’s Daughter, due out on August 30, I researched what books a girl might be reading at the time, since Lucy reads a lot, and where someone who joined the British Army might find himself sent and what he might find there. For The Education of Bet, it was mostly re-reading Tom Brown’s Schooldays by Thomas Hughes, since the book is a cross between that and Shakespeare’s gender-bending comedies. So basically I use a combination of libraries and the Internet. Google is definitely my friend. I don’t have a set pattern that I follow every time. I might do my research almost all in advance, as I did with The Education of Bet; when the need arises as I’m actually writing the book, as I did with The Twin’s Daughter; or after the first draft is completed, in order to layer in authentic detail, as I did with Vertigo. If you accused me of being a higgledy-piggledy writer, I wouldn’t deny it.
Me here again: Check out Lauren’s books for adults, teens, and children. There will be something in her oeuvre just for you!
You can keep following the tour. Here’s yesterday’s question:
July 5: Deborah: You have been given the opportunity to travel the world and sample the local cuisine. Which three countries (or cities) would you like to travel to and what would you like to taste from their culinary creations? (Can be something you’ve already eaten or something new you’ve always wanted to try) http://books-movies-chinesefood.blogspot.com/
And tomorrow’s question:
July 7: Sarah: If you had to travel back in time and spend time with Will and Bet, what modern convenience would you take with you that you couldn’t live without? http://www.greenbeanteenqueen.com/