Writing A Book Set in Another Era

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Hey there. I hope everyone is enjoying the weekend. I am sitting here making out this blog while sick but wanted to continue to touch basis about the current book I am writing. For the first time, I am writing a story that is set in another era. The story takes place in Phoenix Arizona in 1956. I know absolutely nothing about the 50’s other than what I’ve seen in movies and on television. I was born in 1968 so that era had already come and gone by the time I came along but in doing the research I have found it to be a challenge to write a story set in this era.

When I write, I listen to 50’s music by Dion, Elvis Presley, and Frankie Lymon and The Teenagers to help me get into the 50’s mindset. I also had to find out how young people spoke and the type of slang that was used. I had to learn about the events and pop culture that took place that year including the movies that came out for a scene where two of my characters go to see a James Dean film at a drive in. As I write this book I find that I must really get down to detail and today I will be researching the clothes that were worn during that period and the types of cars that were driven.

I try to be as accurate as possible about what certain cities have going on in it like the name of the theatre in my story, for instance, The Silver Dollar Drive In was an actual theatre in in Phoenix Arizona during that time. I also like to be accurate when it comes to what was on television and what people did for fun. I also have to research race relations during that era because my main character Ritchie Nolan falls in love with a black girl and the 50’s was very segregated.

I must say that it’s very hard to break out of my current era. But I was impressed to hear that some of the music from back in those days sounds better than some of the music I hear on the radio today. It was an interesting time and girls didn’t dress near naked like they do today and most of the technology that we have now wasn’t even heard of back then. I can’t even imagine not having a computer. Things are a lot more expensive now than they were back then. In the 1950’s a jar of grape jelly only costed 19 cents but today it costs $2.36 depending on where you purchase it. There were only twelve TV stations in the 1950’s but today we have an estimate of 1200.

I can’t wait to finish this book and will continue to keep you updated on its progression. Have a great week everyone. Until next time…