Secret Library Podcast


Secret Library Podcast Episodes

#142 Cara Robertson

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Most people have heard the rhyme about Lizzie Borden and forty whacks of an axe.

But most don't know the case behind the rhyme and the trial that enthralled the nation in the late 1800s. Well before there was OJ, there was Lizzie Borden. Cara Robertson first wrote about the trial in undergraduate school at Harvard and the story stayed with her. Over the past decades, the idea of documenting the trial persisted, becoming the book out this month.

Cara went through many stages of research, spent time in the maze of facts that were available in order to write this book, having to return an advance and resell the book several years later to be certain she could get it right. If you have thought about true crime, nitty gritty historical research, or trying to get to the bottom of a mystery over a century old, this is your episode. Enjoy!

Discussed in Episode 142 with Cara Robertson

  • Staying engaged with a story overtime 

  • Using details to make your story come alive

  • Deciding to turn a story into a book and then actually writing it

  • The benefits of it taking a long time to write a book 

  • The process of creating characters from a different time period

  • How our relationships with characters change over time

  • How to keep track of all of your research details and then write from them  

  • How being a lawyer impacted writing the trial

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