My books are as near to the truth as it’s possible to get. Research is cross-checked with as many sources, both contemporary and secondary, as I can discover. The facts remain milestones while the stories in-between will always be the results of credible speculation, combined with the author’s own lifetime experiences, and the art of the possible – or even the probable.
Adventures – romances – political intrigues and family treacheries – battles won and battles lost – lives lived and lives sacrificed – all become more interesting when they are soundly based on fact, and are better stories because of it.
Often they were stories handed down, conforming to popular legend and myth, and not often written by direct witnesses, and so to view them as ‘the historical truth’ might be to give them a veracity that they do not deserve. Nevertheless, they provide the novelist with access to a flavour, an atmosphere, that can be just as important to the success of a story as the facts.