Historical Accuracy in Fanfic

LMM fanfic writers in general do a pretty good job with accuracy in their fanfic. I find some little problems here and there in different stories, but not enough usually to ruin a story for me. To me it is an important factor in my own writing and in what I read. What drives me nuts the most though is when characters act like they are living in the 21st Century. Their ideas and reactions are more modern then the times call for, and no one reacts with dismay at them.

How important is historical accuracy to you? To what lengths do you research and find answers to the story you write?
4 Responses
  1. geeruby Says:

    probably not enough research for me. I generally take what I know about a topic and go from there and google for more info if I need to.

    I know exactly what you mean about the 21st century words/actions for Anne characters. The thing that makes me cringe the most is dialogue like this.

    "Oh, cool," said Anne, to Diana.

    Grrrrrr.


  2. I cannot stand to see our slang in a period piece! It's as ridiculous as Shakespeare asking Snopp Dogg, "To be or not to be!"

    I like to do a lot of research before I start writing something. That's basically because I think history is so fascinating, and I like to link literature and history.

    Like everyone else, I go with what I already know, then google for hours doing research. Sometimes, I spend more time researching than writing!

    Another thing I find frustrating is not just language but culture all together being skewed in fanfics. Things that are acceptable and commonplace weren't in the past. For Heaven's sake, in the first "Anne of Green Gables," it's a big deal for Anne to go to Queens then Redmond because most people believed like Diana's parents that a woman's place was in the home only. Montgomery herself was a bit of a pioneer in ladies education by attending Dalhousie.

    So many things were different then. People respected elders, spoke properly, and so on. Once upon a time, it was considered bad to use slang. Slang was for uneducated people. Now we often see it as a good thing.

    Oh well, those are just some of my thoughts.


  3. geeruby Says:

    It bothers me at times when people give their characters from the 1920s obviously modern names. Grrr!

    Other times, though, it doesn't bother me at all. I guess it depends on the name. I have a hard time believing Anne and Gilbert would have a granddaughter named Kaylee or something like that.


  4. That kind of reminds me of something I heard on Designing Women years ago about how odd it will be someday when there are a bunch of grandmothers walking around with names like Tiffany. It just seems odd to us. Though I'm not always particuarly fond of names like Beulah or even Bertha (though it was my Great-Grandmother's name and Rilla's) I think they fit more in that time period. Of course sometimes I don't think SOME names fit in ANY time period. I won't give examples so I won't offend anyone unintentionally.