I mean, come on, look at him! So cute.*
More seriously, though, writing historical fiction has been an interesting challenge. Reading around, there seems to be two camps in terms of how much research you should do before attempting a novel set in a different time period. While I did some cursory investigating to familiarize myself with my era, there was plenty I didn't know going in. I'll be the first to admit that it probably would have behooved me to do a bit more research than I did, but I really don't think there's any way to anticipate everything you'll need to know while writing. Inevitably, you will have to stop and look up what sort of hairstyles were in vogue, what model of telephone was in use, whether or not your lady characters wore underpants beneath those pencil skirts. Those sorts of things that will probably not but wouldn't it be cool if it did? come up in Trivial Pursuit one day.
What year did they remove the 'LAND' from the HOLLYWOOD sign? 1949. Yes, I know that off the top of my head. No, that's not weird.
Ironically, it was this fear of being unprepared that prevented me from writing historical fiction for so long, contrary to my love of reading it. What I've found, though, is that I love learning about all of this stuff as I go along. Yes, it sometimes interrupts my writing when I have to stop and Google the odd historical fact, but it's a thrill to come across some neat piece of information that will lend authenticity to my book. It probably doesn't hurt that I'm a History major and adore learning new things about the past either.
Long story short, I'm having a ball with this novel. Although it's slow going, it's the most fun I've had in a long while, and I think I may have finally found a genre that fits me. Only time will tell!
* Yes, this is pretty much an excuse to put an Elvis picture on my blog. I regret nothing.