So the number one thing I’ve been asked about Paracelos in the Linus Saga, particularly about Runs In Good Condition is, “How come your fantasy isn’t so fantasy?” Which probably means, “why isn’t it set in the medieval/renaissance period?”
Now, I for one think that the rule with fantasy genre is “my world my rules” which is why I have 1930’s union turmoil, pop stars, working women, and chainmail all in the same world. Despite these “anachronisms” (if that word even applies) I still wanted to give everything a unified theme so about 80% of my world is based off of Regency Period England (Late 18th cen. Early 19th cen.) a.k.a Jane Austen’s time period.
Why? Because I wanted Elves dressed like Mr. Darcy.
I’m sure there was more to that decision, but I’m drawing a blank. I think if there was anything else, it was because I wanted something a little different from the usual Camelot crossed with a Renn faire vibe, and I was already very interested in researching the late Georgian period anyway.
I found a great site to do my research on; most of it came from janeausten.co.uk . This is a site dedicated the life, times, and historical sites in Jane Austen’s life and in her novels. There’s ton(ne?)s of articles on the Regency period: what they wore, what they ate, how they entertained themselves, and how they behaved. In the articles I got a lot of inspiration for scenes and items that were featured in my books.
Not surprisingly, Linus and his family’s clothes were close adaptations of regency fashion, down to the cravat and black dance slippers.
The scene were Linus gives Deirdre a cameo necklace is based off a popular jewelry craze in the Georgian period.
And then there are just some crazy coincidences. I had already written a passage about Linus making a ton of raspberry vinegar punch. That idea came one hot day when I had gotten a free sample of raspberry vinegar punch at a Korean market. It was only later when I was looking up recipes (there are some great recipes on janeausten.co.uk!) that I found an article about how raspberry vinegar punch was all the rage in the late Georgian period!
I love doing research like this. It’s one of my most favorite things about being a writer!
For people who are interested in creating their own world, I have this advice: Be original. Don’t try to make another Middle Earth or Pern or Prydain, but for all that: pick a time and pick a place. Find out what they wore and why, what they ate and why, how they worked, how they played, how they loved. It doesn’t have to be 100% accurate, and feel free to mess it up and get your hands dirty, but it’s a great jumping off point for creating a fleshed out, 3-demensional world that feels real.
And have fun with it! If you’re having fun, chances are we’ll have fun reading it!
So until next post, Happy hot chocolate and syllabub, and don’t get your pink tights in a twist! ❤
Images via janeausten.co.uk