Sunday, May 13, 2018

Historical figures and such

And, if you read yesterday's post, you noted I just finished a new weird western book.  There's something else new in this one. I've used historical figures as characters. I have used historical figures for color before. Back when I wrote the Two Devils I used Virgil Earp [Wyatt's brother] to add a little color to the story. You can't go to Tombstone without the Earps. And I tried to add a little color by having Miles read the Epitaph, which I think is the coolest name for a newspaper in the history of the world.  The editor struck that and changed it to the less precise "newspaper". As in, he was reading the newspaper. where I wanted he was reading the Epitaph.   I am still sore about that change 14 years later.

With Fallen Angel  I had some brief interaction with Seth Bullock, who was the town marshal who replaced Wild Bill  Hickok after Hickok's creation of the term Dead Man's Hand to the card playing vernacular. But I also introduced an actual historical figure in the story as a major character. Ulysses S. Grant, appears prominently in the story.  Sioux chief Rain-in-the-Face also appears as a character. It is the chief who decides the capturing of a Martian might be to their advantage.

And there you go. Historical figures taking on little green men from Mars.  Ain't that something.

And that's why I like weird westerns so much.  As long as you tell an entertaining story and have interesting characters, you can pretty much go wherever you want.  It's as wide open as the Wild West.

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