History That Never Was

Home of Dawn Vogel: Writer, Historian, Geek

Question: How Much Historical Research?

| July 26, 2021

I was talking to a newer author of historical fiction recently, and one of the questions they had for me was how much historical research do you need to do before writing historical fiction? My terribly unhelpful answer is, of course, it varies. If I’m writing a short story that’s tied to historical events in […]

Review of The Silence of Bones by June Hur

| July 14, 2021

The Silence of Bones by June Hur (Feiwel & Friends, 2020) is a historical young adult mystery set in early nineteenth century Korea, full of rich detail and wonderful characters. The mystery is also phenomenal, and it will keep you guessing all the way to the reveal! Damo Seol is an indentured servant, bound to […]

A Series of Small Walls at Fantastic History!

| December 24, 2020

Catherine Schaff-Stump is hosting some of my articles about the real history behind my stories from Unfixed Timelines at her Fantastic History blog. The fifth post, and the last one of my guest posts for 2020, “A Series of Small Walls,” is up now! There’s an old Eddie Izzard bit about how archaeologists are always […]

Review of Among the Red Stars by Gwen C. Katz

| November 25, 2020

Among the Red Stars by Gwen C. Katz (Harper Teen, 2017) is a historical fiction novel featuring the Night Witches, the Russian women pilots who flew daring nighttime missions. While the details of the plot are slightly fictionalized, the novel adheres closely to the reality of the history of the Night Witches. The story revolves […]

“Nochnaya Serenada” in Unfixed Timelines 2

| November 17, 2020

The Night Witches were a fascinating and talented group of Russian female pilots during World War II who flew tiny, fragile, slow planes. They made a major impact on the Russian war effort, and they suffered only a small number of casualties in spite of the odds. I’m a sucker for any stories of historical […]

Coming Soon: Sure Shot in Las Capas!

| September 17, 2020

The very first time I was asked to write in the Cobalt City Universe, I looked for a corner that I could carve out as my own. I started out writing the first female incarnation of the Huntsman, one of Cobalt City’s legacy super heroes. After dabbling with some other characters, I returned to the […]

Review of The Witches of St. Petersburg by Imogen Edwards-Jones

| April 29, 2020

The Witches of St. Petersburg by Imogen Edwards-Jones (Harper Paperbacks, 2019) is a beautifully crafted novel of historical fiction, holding closely to actual historical events while concocting a more fantastical explanation behind some of them. Set during the reign of Russian Tsar Nicholas, the story revolves around two Montenegrin princesses, Militza and Stana, who have […]

Cool Alternate History Resource: Historic Cities

| April 20, 2020

If you’re writing alternate history, historical fiction, or even fantastical history, check out Historic Cities as a great source of historical maps. The primary page makes it look a little Eurocentric, but if you click through to the list of city names, you’ll see maps for non-European countries as well!

Fun for Friday: Cool Historical Eclipse Information!

| March 6, 2020

If you’ve ever found yourself wanting to know when during history there were eclipses in a specific location, I’ve got you covered! The HMNAO Eclipse Portal will let you choose a location and see a list of all the eclipses in that location from 1500-2100 AD (or CE). The Solar Eclipse Catalog approaches the topic […]

Fun for Friday: A Weird Historical Tidbit

| January 17, 2020

For today’s Fun for Friday, I’m posting something a little different. Despite having studied the Civil War fairly extensively, I never knew that the Confederacy considered attacking the Union using helicopters. Had their plan succeeded, the Civil War could have turned out quite differently, as neither side had a strong air presence. Had one side […]