I’ve never tired of talking about the works of George MacDonald Fraser. While a lot of people knew his Flashman series, fewer knew of his nonfiction work, especially his masterpiece Quartered Safe Out Here. I first read it while doing my Masters after my thesis adviser gave me a copy. Not only is it aggressively honest, its observation of the tiniest details is like staring at a Faberge egg and finding new and even more intricate bits you missed the first ten times before. I would highly recommend Quartered Safe to anyone looking to improve the writing of characters, narrative, humor, poignancy, action, and most definitely dialogue. The man was a master.
As it happens I just received the copyedited ms of A Darkness Forged in Fire yesterday and am going through the corrections now. I had always planned to acknowledge my admiration and debt to MacDonald Fraser and had hoped he would have been pleased that he inspired someone as profoundly as he did me. It’ll be a bitter sweet moment when I write that acknowledgment now.