Warning: Nerd post ahead!
I thought I would take a divergence from my "How-to" writings to change things up a little. So time for a history class. I know...fun right? Well, I have had a lot of people ask me where I learned the finer details in my books, and how I learned them. Details that provide a lens into war. I certainly have never been to war, and I certainly have never stepped onto a medieval battlefield. Yet, I have always had a keen interest in anything medieval since I was a boy, and I haven't grown up much.
And so people ask me how I know what I have come to know. The important questions, like "what's the difference between a long sword and a bastard sword?", "what the heck is a messer?" or "what is a bloody quillon and why do you keep freaking writing it in if no one knows what it is?" Okay, maybe not with such bravado, but you get the picture.
My point, our world is rich with history and colorful cultures. There is hardly a better way to learn about a culture and its history than by looking at the wars it fought and the armor and weapons they used. I use historically accurate weapons, armor, ships, castles, etc. in my books that are influenced and based off of real cultures.
Also, when naming and placing things in books, I believe it is important to be accurate. If a writer is attempting to describe a sword, they should do their best to name it correctly and describe it properly to place an image of a long sword in the reader's head. If they don't, they could miss their intention and the reader could become confused. A proper image is formed with an accurate description.
My goal then is to describe the many different historical artifacts that I use in my books, their names, uses, etc., things like haubergeons, messers, yatagans, and even quillons!
So, without further delay, let the history class begin!
A display of popular period weapons. Also, how I feel on a regular basis.