Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Infusing History Into Pulse of Heroes: A Guest Post By A. Jacob Sweeney

Today, we have a guest post by A. Jacob Sweeny as part of the VBTC Romancing Your Darkside Book Tour.

She's going to talk to us about infusing history into her paranormal romance, Pulse of Heroes.

In addition, she's giving away a copy of Pulse of Heroes. Just leave a comment and we'll use random.org to pick a winner. You'll be receiving a physical copy, so the author will be contacting you for a shipping address.

Now on to the guest post:


There was never a question about infusing history into Pulse of Heroes, as the entire idea for the story began with me wanting to bring ancient history back to life. My intention first and foremost was to bring the subjects of what most people today think of as legends into our modern reality, since the bulk of these tales have their roots in actual historical events. And this was to serve as the backdrop of my romance and very real coming-of-age story of 17-year-old Michelle. The immortals in my novel are the story tellers, and through them we get to learn about so much. Below, an example:

Elliot, our main immortal character, served in the military under King David’s command. Now most people are probably familiar with the legend of how David as a boy toppled the giant Goliath with a small sling shot. Whether this ever happened or not, perhaps we’ll never know. However, as I study archaeology and participate in actual excavations, I get to see firsthand how legends and history collide as we discover more and more. And this to me is the most exciting thing. I wanted to share this with people who would never dream of picking up a history book, let alone a field report from an ancient site. I will give you another example.

I had the unique privilege to actually excavate in the hills of Judea on a site that has been dated to the proposed time of King Saul (David’s predecessor) and King David. It overlooks the valley where the Philistines would meet the Israelites in battle. It also marks the exact place where David and Goliath’s story is said to have taken place. On a clear day one can see the outlines of the cities of the Philistines, now also active archaeological sites, from this hilltop (it is a royal pain in the behind to climb up that long steep pathway every day). The encampment was clearly constructed so as to have an unobstructed view of every side of the great valley as a military vantage point.  The Goliath story might be legend, but the Israelite encampments are not. Knowing this gives the Goliath story a whole new dimension.  I was there. I dug and lifted the broken dishes that these fighting men used to eat their dinners. They were every bit as real as we are today. Just last year, a carving of the name “Goliath” was found in one of the Philistine ruins. Suddenly, the name Goliath itself gains a new reality. We don’t know which Goliath, but the name was evidently used by these people. Another clue pointing to David’s existence has been found carved into a victory stele (a large stone) by Hazael, King of Damascus, or by one of his sons. The inscription is in Aramaic and commemorates victories over local ancient peoples including the Davidic Kingdom. The bracketed areas below denote missing fragments which have been filled in by recognized biblical and ancient near-East text experts.

5: And Hadad went in front of me, [and] I departed from [the] seven[...]
6: of my kingdom, and I slew [seve]nty kin[gs], who harnessed thou[sands of cha-]
7: riots and thousands of horsemen (or horses). [I killed Jeho]ram son of [Ahab]
8: King of Israel, and I killed [Ahaz]iahu son of [Jehoram kin]g
9: of the House of David. And I set [their towns into ruins and turned]
10: their land into [desolation........................]  ( Courtesy of Wikipedia)

This is what I wanted to share with my readers. I wanted to spread knowledge around. And if the reader is interested, all they have to do is search further.

So far I have received nothing but compliments with regards to the way I weave short historical tidbits into the main plot of Pulse of Heroes. The real history also provides a basis for the existence of the immortal characters. I have noticed that many people do not enjoy “high fantasy”, and yet historical reality is just as fantastic. As the saying goes, “Truth is indeed stranger than fiction”!

If anyone is interested, right now there is a continuing discussion on the Pulse of Heroes Facebook page about the historical elements of the novel. You should come check it out - it’s on the left side under the “Discussion” tab.

Thank you for having me here!

A Jacob Sweeny.


Thanks for stopping by.

Check out AJ's site at http://www.pulseofheroes.com/.

Remember, if you want to be entered for a free chance to win a copy of Pulse of Heroes, just leave a common (preferably with some sort of e-mail address so we can contact the winner).


dawnmomoffour said...

Love the blog. So full of information. Gave me new insight into a book I so want to read. On another note, I am so sad to hear of your troubles. I hope that the thief is brought to justice.

Rina Heisel said...

Wow, actually being present on an excavation site has to be so inspiring! Very cool, the book sounds amazing.

- Rina

IandSsmom said...

Very interesting! Thanks for the giveaway!!

Saribonita said...

I am eagerly waiting to read POH!!! I am so sorry about some pirating POH, Ms. Sweeney as well as many authors graciously give up copies of their books so a select few can peruse and spread the word. I hope the person realizes what they did was just wrong!
Thanks for the chance to enter!


Joella said...

Great blog!!! Pulse of Heroes is an awesome book! You did a wonderful job integrating the historical content in the story line.

Anyone out there who hasn't read the book yet...it is a MUST read...LOVE IT!!!

Lisa said...

Interesting guest post, can't wait to read Pulse of Heroes :)

Konfetti said...

Great blog and fantastic interview with A. Jacob Sweeney. I'm a big fan of history, historical fiction and the paranormal so this sounds like exactly the kind of book I'd love.
The time and research that went into this is amazing!

Anonymous said...

Wow! Your book sounds amazing! I love Israel, and went there when I was 17. Being there,seeing these deep and rich historical places you have described fill me with awe. To me the stories are all true and to have stepped in these same places of the ancients stays with me. I really want to read your book now. Thanks for this great opportunity and giveaway.
gikkinikki30 AT yahoo DOT com

SalvationWriter said...

It's refreshing to read a story nowadays that is full of rich details and intriguing content. This is a showcase of an author's handwork and diligence in the research and planning phases. Thank you for sharing this blog with us!

Misty said...

She should be ashamed of herself for what she did to you!!!!! No one should have something they have worked so hard on become stolen :'-(

Instead of stealing it I am proud to enter in a contest to win it and if I don't I will BUY it.

Misty T

Angela MacIntyre said...

GREAT blog post!! I loved hearing how you did the research and I LOVED Pulse of Heroes!! So you don't need to enter me in the contest. Sorry to hear of your other troubles. When I was younger, I wanted to be an archaeologist. I never fulfilled that dream, but I do love to hear about others realizing theirs. Your book is amazing. Congratulations!!

anomanous said...

i can not wait to read this book the cover the description is so how can i put it its like it telling u read me read me and like i said cant wait to read it


Tymothy Longoria said...

Sweeney. You know I loves ya. She'll get hers.

Amanda W. said...

Definitely cannot wait to read POH! As was said above if I don't win it I will buy it! It sounds like you have written a very good book and I can't wait to get my hands on a copy!!

Jennifer Wright said...

I cannot wait to read Pulse of Heroes! I'm saving to get a print copy because I have heard nothing but good things about this book! Awesome!

J.A. Beard said...

Going to let people keep entering until the morning, then I'll use random.org to select the winner.

Thanks for stopping by.

Nikki said...

That is completely awesome that you actually got to dig at and around the site that marked King Davids time. So many are doubtful of the actual exsistance of those stories told from long ago. Maybe someone will dig up the story recorded on a tablet :)

Anonymous said...

I would love to read Pulse of heroes.Great Interview,I must say.Thanks for the opportunity to win this amazing book!.



A. Jacob Sweeny said...

Thank you for everyone who had commented. This is just a tiny peek into my research project. We go to many places in Pulse of Heroes -Egypt, Yemen, Greece, Libya, India/Pakistan, Rome, Turkey, Sumeria/Iraq. and then we had to the 1400's AD in Eastern and even Northern Europe... Thank you for hosting me JA Beard -it has been an honor.

Pam Logan said...

Loved the post. Can't wait to read the book.

Best of luck with all the troubles you have been going through.

Pam Logan said...

Oops! Forgot to add

Pam (at) PamLogan (dot) net

J.A. Beard said...

The winner of the drawing is . . . Jennifer Wright.

You will be contacted about receipt of your book. Congratulations and thanks for stopping by.

Jennifer Wright said...

I won!!!! Whooo!!! I'm sooo excited! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Heather Marsten said...

I love how archeology is proving the Bible correct - not one new discovery disproves any part of the Bible. I am going to check out your blog. I was in Israel three years ago, the power of the history of Israel is mind=blowing - affected my reading of the Word profoundly.
HM at HVC dot RR dot COM