The importance of research when writing historical fiction

So, I’m now writing my second novel, a story set in the 1830s. I literally just began to write it — I’m on page number one. And, I’ve already made a glaring error. I opened with my family of characters travelling on a train to their new home in north Georgia. It’s a long trip and they’re tired and the train is uncomfortable, etc. Fortunately, it dawned on me that trains were in their infancy in the 1830s and so, my poor little family would not be taking a train from New England to rural, mountainous north Georgia.

That would have been an embarrassing mistake! So, I made the necessary (minor) changes required to better line up my story with history. And now, back to writing (and researching)!

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