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Writer's Circle > Blurb for LGBTQ historical fiction

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message 1: by John (new)

John | 3 comments Greetings! I’d very much value feedback on the following blurb. My current WIP is historical fiction set in Ireland during World War Two. It has an LGBTQ relationship at its center:

Fifteen-year-old James Brennan thrives in the tenement slums of Dublin. He’s smart, ambitious and always on the lookout for opportunities to improve his family’s lot. The newly declared war between Britain and Germany could change everything, and James feels the potential like electricity in the air.
Otto Werner may be the only German teenager still in Ireland. He’s lonely, but he knows he’s destined for great things. His father works at the German diplomatic mission in Dublin, and Otto is assured that after the war, the Reich will need bright young men like him who know these islands and their people.
Each boy sees an opportunity in the other, but neither expects the war to drag on for years, pulling everything down around them. And they certainly didn’t expect to fall in love.
Can these young men overcome their differences, survive through the darkest years of war, and find a way to forge a future together?


message 2: by Susannah (new)

Susannah (susannaheanes) | 14 comments I'd read it.


message 3: by Michael (last edited Jul 28, 2020 05:54PM) (new)

Michael (michaelelias) | 5 comments John wrote: "Greetings! I’d very much value feedback on the following blurb. My current WIP is historical fiction set in Ireland during World War Two. It has an LGBTQ relationship at its center:

Fifteen-year-..."


It sounds like a different sort of tale, made more interesting by the unusual wartime circumstances. You have 'given away' a lot of the plot in your blurb, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. I tend to err on the side of keeping things more general in my blurbs, but they could stand to be more detailed while still averting spoilers. In your case, this is fine. Also, I write contemporary M/M romance, not historical, and you are attempting something a lot more difficult and one which may require a lot of research for accuracy. (Fortunately, there's the internet.) It's good that you made the two boys near the same age, for the whole underage/legal aspect of things. I've not had to deal with issues of age, featuring only adults in my literary (and perhaps one day again actual) relationships, but if you can handle it innocently in your story...Personally, I'd stay clear of it, but I'm no expert on legal ramifications, especially in the EU.


message 4: by John (new)

John | 3 comments Susannah wrote: "I'd read it."

Thanks Susannah, I’ll be looking for Betas down the road a bit!


message 5: by John (new)

John | 3 comments Thanks Michael. Yes, it has required A LOT of research! The romance angle is a slow burn, because I wanted them to mature together through the war. What starts out as teenage “fooling around” slowly develops into a deeper commitment, even as they’re forced to rethink everything they thought they knew about themselves and the world before the war. And of course, in the 1940s, there wasn’t any social context by which they can define themselves positively. It’s definitely a “feel good” story once the dust settles though! Thanks for your comments. :)


message 6: by Michael (new)

Michael (michaelelias) | 5 comments Interesting that they can keep it to themselves. Of course, back then, things weren't open and they probably felt the shame and ridicule of their peers if anyone discovered the relationship. Forty or so years later, in my high school and probably almost everywhere else, even suspected people were the subjects of derision and scorn. But in your story, it's nice that they mature together, quite a change from the usual teenage whirlwind romances that come and go like people through a revolving door.


message 7: by Janet (new)

Janet Souter | 9 comments It drew me in immediately. I've always been interested in that time period, but especially I'm intrigued by this unique pre-WWII perspective.


message 8: by Janet (new)

Janet Souter | 9 comments Oops, I meant just "WWII perspective." You may want to establish the time period in the first sentence, if possible


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