the travails of writing

So a couple nights ago I sat down to work on STONE’S THROE and came to a moment when I needed to describe Amelia’s motorcycle. I went looking for a picture, and…well, I found one. Except it became clear as I read about it that the in-character-defined motorcycle…basically didn’t exist. Even in 1917. It was essentially a prototype, hand-built in 1909 by a kid in Italy to pursue a racing career. Over the next fifteen years or so he developed a line that went into mass production in the 20s and became quite a name by the early 30s…but in 1917, there was just no way Amelia was going to pick a bike like that up on the street in Paris.

After half an hour of increasingly dismayed research I emailed Fred and said does it have to be this kind of bike…? No, it didn’t, thank goodness, even if it’s established as such.

This is the kind of detail that I would normally skip to deal with later, because most of the time it’s not worth getting bogged down on something the big picture of the story can do without. Except I had no idea this time that when I went to look for a picture that it would lead down an extended research hole instead. Whoops. :)

I sure know a lot more about early-make motorcycles now than I ever expected to. :)

Tagged ,

4 thoughts on “the travails of writing

  1. As a person who once looked up and realized that they had SIX Wikipedia articles open in in different windows to research a trivial point about the Hindu religion and its pantheon to make sure that a minor character’s NAME fit into the story properly, I feel your pain. :)

Comments are closed.