I didn’t finish “Once a Goddess” tonight, so it’s officially late — though I hope to get it done soon.
But I did crank out 2124 words on Midnight Never Come, which doesn’t suck. All of it in an extended flashback scene, mind you, that may or may not ever end up in the novel; I even put it in a separate “flashbacks” file, so I can keep it separate from the main narrative and decide when, if ever, to drop it in. I suspect I’m going to write a number of these things for my own edification, and not all of them will end up being used. But they do matter, because they help me get important background details straight, and the ones I don’t put in will probably end up as freebies on Swan Tower.
So, 2124 words on how Gilbert Gifford got recruited into Walsingham’s service. On the surface, it’s just like history tells you. (One interpretation, anyway. I’m finding a great deal of disagreement over when Gifford started being a double agent. But that’s fine; I’ll just run with the interpretation that serves my purposes.) Beneath . . . well, that’s the whole point of this novel. There’s history, and then there’s the beneath layer I’m adding to it.
It’s fun. But it ain’t easy. In writing those 2124 words, I consulted four different books and two websites (one of them being the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, which I discovered the other day and which rocks my world). And I’m having to remind myself that the set of people who would know whether the queen was in residence at Greenwich or somewhere else in December of 1585 and the set of people who will be reading Midnight Never Come are unlikely to overlap to any substantial degree, so I should just put her at Greenwich if I bloody well feel like it and move on with the paragraph rather than worrying that I’m getting Something Wrong.
Historical fantasy. Oy. Why did I think this was a good idea, again?