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Historical fiction, direction needed

Discussion in 'Fiction' started by Ali-Shobbar, Feb 11, 2013.

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  1. Ali-Shobbar

    Ali-Shobbar Member

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    Hello people!
    My name is Ali and I am a newbie.
    I am a comic artist engaged in a project for a graphic Novel about a WW2 - WW1, from the German troop's perspective ( at least a German soldier) .
    It's a Historical fiction,
    But I have to get the battles, troops, divisions, what happened and where, all right to the best extent.

    Background Information: Basically the story revolves around a German guy who was born in 1900, participated in Verdun and became a Sniper, in WWII he was called into action again to serve his father land.. to his dread.
    The story begins somewhere in the 1941 or 1942 on the eastern front. In conclusion of a vicious engagement, the story will fall into flashbacks to his early times before Verdun. then progress again until his present time in WWII.
    okay, here's the established points that the story is built on:

    1- the story begins as Russian bombardment stops in preparation for a attack/counter attack to push the German's back ( the main character's regiment takes the main impact).
    2- the story start in the ruins of some Russian city (where? I've no idea yet where to place him)
    3- Russian T-34s is used in the attack/counter attack
    4- the main character is a decorated a knight's cross.
    5- He is a sniper, of some significant rank (which rank?)

    The problem's I am facing:

    I have nooo idea where to place my lead character, I thought I'd place him in the 3rd Gebirgsjäger, which happened to fight on the eastern front from as early as 1940.
    But which Regiment?
    the thing with the knight cross as early as 1941-1942 is documented, and to place a grizzled old WWI veteran sniper in the Gebirgsjäger...? the Gebirgsjäger 144 Regiment had 3 ace snipers, all decorated and mentioned, so is it wise to stick a fictional guy in the same division but other regiment?
    Where's the best fit to put my lead character? do you recommend a division where such character can blend in historical-wise?

    What do you advice me guys?
    I really need help to get started right, so i need to research the right cloths, insignia, battle field, battle plans...etc



    Btw, the main character's face is the one I use as an avatar,
    and here's the beginning of the prologue:

    I have lost count of the attempts to start this journal; the trail of crumbed paper followed me from camp to camp, muddled with empty shells and dead bodies. It was not that I had no time to write, I have to at least admit that much to my self, but I suppose I could not truly face the darkness of my past. Do not mistake me for a coward, for it takes more than simple courage to survive the horrors that I have out lived. Still, every time I wrap my dirt stained fingers around the pen and attempt to record the bizarre happenings of my life; the memories of those I hunted, killed, and those I ran away from, becomes so vivid that it cripples me. But as my father-God rests his soul-used to say ‘A man has to face his demons or he turns into one’. Though I reckon he would turn in his grave if he knew the man I turned out to be.

    My name is Truamen Hansel. The year is 1941(2)?, the place is (??), Eastern front, the basin of hell on earth. Outside this basement are the hellish sounds of the Russian big guns, where I believe the biggest and bloodiest orchestra in the history of mankind takes place; Death hums as the screaming shells set out the most dramatic rhyme, and the distant drumming of the artillery moans in the back ground as the high notes of the bullets rise and fall in a brilliant chores. While the symphony of chaos stirs up this part of the world day and night, you can feel the earth applauding for it’s brilliance as our bunkers tremble and dust rains falls from above as if it was snowing on Christmas eve, snowing dirt.
    I do not speak out of despair or hatred for all that’s living, no. My years on the field had taught me to see life for what it is; a trial for mankind; a trial for me...



    >>>>>>Thank you very much for the time you've given to read and reply<<<<<<<<<<
     
  2. belasar

    belasar Court Jester Staff Member

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    I have recently read Frontsoldaten by Stephen G. Fritz which goes deeply into the psychology of a German infantryman (mostly eastern front) using their own words. This might be a good source material for your character's motivation.
     
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  3. brndirt1

    brndirt1 Saddle Tramp

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    I think you might want to rethink his birth year, since he would have only been about 16 when the Verdun battle occurred, and the Germans weren't using youths that early in WW1. He could have been slightly older, and been one of those men who made up the 100,000 man force allowed under the Versailles treaty, since to train as many as possible the Germans "demoted" experienced veterans so they could train a rotating main force.
     
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  4. belasar

    belasar Court Jester Staff Member

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    Good catch Clint.
     
  5. formerjughead

    formerjughead The Cooler King

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    You're writing a stroy about a fictional charecter so don't get too wound up in the details, too many details will have the opposite effect of what you are looking for. Place him on the outskirts of a historical event. A good source of inspiration might be "The Forgotten Soldier" by Guy Sajer, wixch is basically a fictional first person account that never goes into details of the bigger picture. Guy Sajer is the Pseudonym of an Alsacien who joined the German Army by the name of Guy Memeiux.
     
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  6. Ali-Shobbar

    Ali-Shobbar Member

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    thank you :)
    I've googled the book and will get to it, actually there are many memoirs that fiddle with that subject, but might not be as deep as the book you mentioned
     
  7. Ali-Shobbar

    Ali-Shobbar Member

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    That's a nice point, I've to move the character's birth two years before 1900, because I need him to be mauled by Verdun, that's one of the story highlights ^_^
    Thank you for the pointer!
     
  8. Ali-Shobbar

    Ali-Shobbar Member

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    I've read the "The Forgotten Soldier" by Guy Sajer, although it was a great book, I really enjoyed, it is too "outskirty" for the events of the story I am working on. I was thinking more of the fiction lines of "Grandfather's Tale" by Timothy Erenberger, kinda in the thickest of some of the main historical events.
    I've to walk to fine line between historical troop details and fiction, Because I don't want to end up pissing off the history fans if I missed up on troops, battles, events that didn't exist, or severely disorient the ones that did.
    I just need a head start of where can I place the lead character safely and be able to play him around in events that already took place, Do you think it'll be shabby if I placed him in Italy with the Fallschirmjäger? or with the Gebirgsjäger at the Eastern front? which would give me more reasonable space to squeeze my character and play him the part?

    thank you very much for your time
     
  9. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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  10. lwd

    lwd Ace

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