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Biographical Fiction: How to Bring People who Once Lived Back to Life

23 October 2021 | 1:30 pm - 3:45 pm

Biographical Fiction is a literary genre which reimagines a real person’s life. It blends the meticulous research of a biography with the vivid, immersive readability of a novel, and blurs the boundary between the two. In recent years, biographical novels have become hugely popular, with novels such as Burial Rites by Hannah Kent, The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris, Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel, and The Paris Wife by Paula McLain becoming international bestsellers. Yet how do you research the life of someone who once lived? How can you bring their characters to life on the page? And how much freedom do you have to imagine their inner lives, their fears and desires and drives, and put words into their mouths? In this two-hour long masterclass, Dr Kate Forsyth will share some of her insights from her own experience of writing award-winning and bestselling historical biographical fiction. She will discuss research, character, voice and dialogue, and how to find the balance between creative freedom and ethical responsibility.

This workshop includes a 15 minute break.

This workshop will not be recorded.

Kate Forsyth

Kate Forsyth wrote her first novel aged seven, and has sold more than a million copies since. Her novels include The Blue Rose, a story of impossible love set in Revolutionary France and Imperial China; Beauty in Thorns, a reimagining of ‘Sleeping Beauty’ set amongst the passions and scandals of the Pre-Raphaelites; Bitter Greens, a reimagining of ‘Rapunzel’ which won the 2015 ALA Award for Best Historical Fiction; and The Wild Girl,  the story of the forbidden romance behind the Grimm brothers’ famous fairy tales. Kate also has a doctorate in fairy tale studies and is an accredited master storyteller. Kate is the HNSAustralasia Patron. For further information:




23 October 2021
1:30 pm - 3:45 pm
Event Category:

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