I like to have a firm background for my worlds so I do spend time doing serious research. The upcoming book, Shadow Over Avalon is a take on what happens when the king returns at the time of greatest need for humanity. So why the research? This is futuristic, right? Well it is still grounded in the past, so it has to be accurate and therein lies the problem as history is malleable according to politics and the socio-religious needs of the times.
King Arthur died at the hands of the son he had with his sister, right? Um no. This was actually an invention of a misogamist monk named Geoffrey of Monmouth. Morgan le Fay was a high priestess of the old religion and as such, presented a threat to the Christian church by embodying the power of women. He had to put a stop to those concepts so came up with a smear campaign designed to horrify decent folks. Delving really deep into the old Welsh legends gives the true story. One has to wonder how a celibate monk managed to come up with those sort of thoughts, later reiterated by Mallory.
The whole idea behind the invention was to discredit women and present them as feeble persons incapable of knowing how to direct their own lives. Now this fitted in nicely with the perceived role of women at the time the monk wrote his fantasy. Women were property, and not fit persons to make decisions. See how far they had come from Boudicca?
How does this fit in with my book? It doesn’t. However, it did give me a good handle on who the real people were and how they would have interacted with each other. My Arthur is true to his real self, as are his companions, so no weird and erroneous squinkies in this book. He is honorable and the ladies are valiant and strong, as they were portrayed in the first place by the Welsh bards.
Shadow Over Avalon upcoming from Kristell Ink in October 2013. Stay tuned for further snippets. This is the first of a series. The second book will be released in 2014 and is already with my publishers.