Research for The American are Coming!
I love to do research. I can’t help it. it Is one of my guilty pleasures. I’m a nerd. Always have been. In school when we’d get the chance to go to the library to do research, I’d get so caught up in the search I sometimes forgot what I was searching for. Finding new things along the way is part of the joy of doing the research. The problems are going off in another direction than the one you intended or getting so lost in the research you forget about the writing, and the biggie, wanting to put everything you discovered into your story. I mean, when you find out really cool things it’s difficult not to include them in your story. BUT… while it might be interesting and maybe even important to know that Buffalo Bill’s Wild West show had a second female sharpshooter or that he hired over one hundred Sioux to work in his show even while there were still Indian Wars going on, all of this information is important and helps me as a writer understand my story’s time period and politics, how much of it is really necessary for the story itself.
It has taken me years to feel confident, and I say that with a laugh because I’m not really confident that I’ve reached the point where I know what I’m doing, but I’ve taken the classes and done the research and tried to immerse myself into the time period. Developing the character, the atmosphere and the series is important. I hope that when you read The Americans are Coming that you experience life in a traveling show, (I researched the history of the circus in America, Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show and travel in the 1890s), that you get a feel for Winnie’s life as a performer and a member of the show family, I hope you enjoy piecing together the clues and puzzling out the mystery, but I above it all, I hope you read the story and not see the work that has gone into it only the entertainment that it offers.
For a list of the books, YouTube videos and blogs I used to research this book, here are the ones I’ve compiled so far, and they are by no means the full list. I also have references from people such as HCRW president: Cyn Hayden who gave me information on steamer ships, my granddaughter: Hailey Miesse and her mother, Brandi Lupton who aided me with my horse research, my husband David who helped with many miscellaneous questions (he’s a great research assistant), and my local librarians: Denise Toler and Robina Norman who answer weird and bizarre questions at odd times during the day (and sometimes at night).
Buffalo Bill’s America by Louis S. Warren
Wild Women by Autumn Stephens
A Victorian Lady’s Guide to Life by Elspeth
Gangway! Sea Language Comes Ashore by Joanna Carver Colcord
The Great Tours: England, Scotland, and Wales The Great Courses by Professor Patrick N. Allitt, Emory University
The Writer’s Guide to Everyday Life in the Wild West from 1840-1900 by Candy Moulton
The Writer’s Guide to Everyday Life in Regency and Victorian England from 1811-1901 by Kristine Hughes
Eyewitness Visual Dictionary The Visual Dictionary of Ships and Sailing
Reader’s Digest America’s Forgotten History
Battle for the Big Top by Les Standiford
Unmentionable by Therese Oneill
The Hidden History of Holidays by Hannah Harvey
The Poisoner’s Handbook by Deborah Blum
Stephen Fry’s Victorian Secrets
The Life and Times of Prince Albert by Patrick Allitt
The American West: History, Myth and Legend by Patrick Allitt
Absolute History https://youtu.be/xyUOBM0UNQk
Weird History https://youtu.be/XnvPauD-Wto
Joe Scott https://youtu.be/3M6e6TG7nDA