Instead, I visited all the sites in Egypt that had any bearing to that early pre-Dynastic period. I recruited two ground-breaking Egyptologists to serve as mentors for the historical background of the novels.
For five years I immersed myself in the history of the period, reading everything I could get my hands on, then pestering my mentors with questions and visiting with them in Egypt, England and Berlin.
Fortunately for me, relatively little is known with certainty about the period. That allowed me some latitude in weaving a story that would hold the reader’s attention and not come across as a history textbook. Based on my average 4.5 star reviews on Amazon, I feel like I was able to create an engaging story, while preserving a semblance of historical accuracy.
As with any work of historical fiction, the author takes liberties. Yet we also have a sincere commitment to try to be as true to the historical record as possible. We do make mistakes, though; at least I did. In one scene I described a meal that included tomatoes. Egypt today is the major producer of tomatoes in the Arab world, so I erroneously, and without my usual obsessive fact-checking, assumed that was the case 5,000 years ago. Not so! Fortunately I was able to correct that mistake before the book received wide attention.