S172. Out of History: Transforming Research into Literature

Room 3A, Washington State Convention Center, Level 3
Saturday, March 1, 2014
12:00 pm to 1:15 pm


Family archives and other historical documents can be compelling resources for novelists, but they come with pitfalls and responsibilities. How can fiction honor the truth of the past? How do we walk the line between basing our work on facts and falling into research rapture or, worse, inadvertent plagiarism? Three established authors of historically-based novels will discuss strategies for creating original new work that builds on the past without submitting to, or merely repeating, history.



Aimee Liu is author of the novels Flash House, Cloud Mountain, and Face. Nonfiction works include Gaining and Solitaire. Her short stories and essays have appeared in more than a dozen anthologies, magazines and literary journals. She teaches in Goddard College's MFA program in Creative Writing.

Micheline Aharonian Marcom has published four novels, including a trilogy of books about the Armenian genocide and its aftermath in the twentieth century. Her fifth book, A Brief History of Yes, is forthcoming.

Christina Baker Kline is The New York Times bestselling author of five novels: Orphan Train, Bird in Hand, The Way Life Should Be, Desire Lines, and Sweet Water. She has also written and/or edited five nonfiction books.


March 8–11, 2023
Seattle, Washington

Seattle Convention Center