All forums > On Writing > Holocaust Fiction. Too soon?
page 3 of 8

Holocaust Fiction. Too soon?

colin smith

first registered 19.02.09

last online 9 hours ago

Watch The Night Porter. My immediate question would be why would a Waffen SS officer try to break his Jewish lover out of Auschwitz? I already find it unbelievable. You are trying to fit the normal into a place where any consideration for humanity has long gone. An artist's conceit I think. <nolink>close quotes</nolink>

I tend to agree. The premise as stated is really not credible. I would also question why the officer has left matters so late.

Yes, holocaust fiction sells (if you wish to put it so crudely) but there is a distinction between fiction that is about the holocaust and fiction that seeks to use it as a handy backdrop. That you have chosen Auschwitz, that most iconic of death camps and the Waffen SS, that most loathsome part of the german army suggests a severe lack of subtlety.

Posted: 17/07/2012 12:45:32

report abuse

kelliewallace23

first registered 03.08.09

last online 4 days ago

Still in concept stage. When it's up to 10000 words I'll put it up do everyone can take a look and make their own opinions.

Posted: 17/07/2012 12:55:40

report abuse

kelliewallace23

first registered 03.08.09

last online 4 days ago

For what its worth, I like your idea. I'd probably pick something like that up in the bookshop! <nolink>close quotes</nolink>

Thanks hun!

Posted: 17/07/2012 12:56:06

report abuse

colin smith

first registered 19.02.09

last online 9 hours ago

Smile

OK, but "i don't not want to look anti-semantic" is even more of a head scratcher. <nolink>close quotes</nolink>

To be anti-semantic is quite literally 'to be against meaning or logic in language' or perhaps to deliberately abjure language that conveys meaning and logic. Had you meant to type anti-semantic then I would encourage you to explore its possibilities since it would be a wonderful and original way of conveying the full horror, meaningless and illogicality of the holocaust.

Alas, I suspect you meant anti-semitic.

Posted: 17/07/2012 12:56:28

report abuse

colin smith

first registered 19.02.09

last online 9 hours ago

I'm not looking for backers. It's still in concept stage. I know the nazis were the bad guys and history proves that. I just don't want people to think otherwise. My book will contain historical facts and people will die. I would want to be careful is all.
<nolink>close quotes</nolink>

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/682761.The_Nazi_Officer_s_Wife
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Nazi-Officers-Wife-survived-holocaust/dp/0349113793/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1342526475&sr=1-2

It's not a novel but one Jewish woman's account of how she survived

You're going to need an astounding amount of research to pull it off and much of that research is going to be grim reading.

Posted: 17/07/2012 13:03:58

report abuse

Big Daddy

first registered 13.11.09

last online 11 mins ago

If you do write this book make sure that your research is thorough. Watch Conspiracy from HBO/BBC, watch Auschwitz, the Nazis and the Final Solution, watch The Nazis a warning from history (all may be available on Youtube if you're lucky). After that and if you still want to write your book then try reading Martin Gilbert's the Holocaust and Forgotten voices of the Holocaust by Lyn Smith. Clearly the success of Schindler's Ark (now retitled Schindler's List after the movie) shows that fictionalising events of that period can be done and a Nazi can be turned into a hero (Oscar Schindler was a nazi-party member and a war profiteer who became someone who rescued victims of the holocaust).

My question would be why a member of the Waffen SS? There is a perception that somehow the Waffen SS were more noble than the rest of the SS because they were soldiers but this has no basis in fact. The Waffen SS were the military wing of the SS and each member had to pass the same recruiting requirements as any other member of the SS. Personel were interchangeable and Hitler's bodyguard Bruno served on the Eastern front with the Waffen SS (two tours). Furthermore the Waffen SS were responsible for some of the worst attrocities perpetrated during the period on both East and Western Fronts (in N Africa were the Waffen SS were not deployed such attrocities are practically unheard of).

Next would be the issue of how, where, when and why a Waffen SS man who believes a jew to be an untermenschen would fall in love with a jewish woman. That jewish women were sexually assaulted in the camps we do know but if a German were to be caught doing so he would be in contravention of the Nuremburg Laws for the protection of German blood and liable to imprisonment at the very least. In Schindler's List we witness the self loathing Goethe feels when he developes feelings for poor Helen Hirsch and as he cannot release these feelings sexually and remain a good Nazi within the law he perpetually beats the girl. For a true believing Nazi Jews were not human and any relationship with one was unnatural. That's quite an obstacle for you to overcome. Remember no member of the SS, Waffen or not, was unwilling. They all signed up to be in the Aryan honour guard and in theory were true believers. I have watched interviews with some who say differently, convincing ones as well, but the fact remains that the Army drafted recruits, the SS selected recruits.


Posted: 17/07/2012 13:16:49

report abuse

kelliewallace23

first registered 03.08.09

last online 4 days ago

Thank you for your post. I think I have dug a hole for myself with this book. I never thought it would garner this much response. My Problem is I love history and writing about it but I do not think of the research and 'real lives' because it is based on fact. I had a huge problem getting my other HF right because it was based on historical fact. I'm thinking of putting this book on the backburner until I know I am ready to deal with it.

Posted: 17/07/2012 13:21:28

report abuse

urbantales

retired user

I have been head down writing my next historical fiction based during WW2 Germany, and the Holocaust. Now my problem lies heavily in the 'third' character of the story - the holocaust. It revolves around a Waffen SS soldier trying to break free his Jewish love in Auschwitz. I stopped writing it because I am afraid not only could be highly controversial and i don't not want to look anti-semantic. I have written it unbiased. My concerns lie in the topic, the sellablilty and the possibility of getting press.
Do you think Holocaust fictions sell? <nolink>close quotes</nolink>

I think the interest historically and emotionally in the Holocaust will always make it a saleable concept. As to credibility of course there are going to be those that question this officers motive and that heroines actions, but fiction engages our imagination, and a well written tale, about the Holocaust with artistic license( for none of us were there) could well be a winner. Just write believe in you, enjoy, post and take whatever criticisms come constructive or otherwise.

Posted: 17/07/2012 13:21:46

report abuse

ceejezoid

first registered 10.04.12

last online 6 mins ago

I tend to agree. The premise as stated is really not credible. I would also question why the officer has left matters so late.

Yes, holocaust fiction sells (if you wish to put it so crudely) but there is a distinction between fiction that is about the holocaust and fiction that seeks to use it as a handy backdrop. That you have chosen Auschwitz, that most iconic of death camps and the Waffen SS, that most loathsome part of the german army suggests a severe lack of subtlety. <nolink>close quotes</nolink>

Auschwitz, yes, perhaps a lack of subtlety. But Kelli does say its in concept stage, and whats the first place you think of when someone says 'concentration camp'?

I don't think it seems that incredible. If you start getting into the history surrounding the Nazi Party, and why they came to power, its conceivable that a more liberal minded person could be swept up by the politics and mob mentality, even if they weren't just doing it to protect themselves. Its about people, and people do strange things. Why would he leave it so late? Maybe he didn't realise the full extent of what Aushwitz entailed. Maybe he thought he could get her out before. Maybe he didn't realise how much he loved her until the last moment. A million different questiosn that probably need to be researched before a plot outline can really take shape.

God I love history

Smile

Posted: 17/07/2012 13:23:49

report abuse

kelliewallace23

first registered 03.08.09

last online 4 days ago

Thanks ceejezoid Smile as you said the book is in concept stage. I've started it when they were childhood sweethearts, war started and broke them apart. He went dOwn a violent route, she went to camp. The realisation to break her out hasn't come to me yet but I plan to involve jewish partisans and research! Lol

Posted: 17/07/2012 13:29:01

report abuse

To leave comments on this message board please Register or Login

page 3 of 8