|Marie Benedict, author of The Other Einstein|
Today, I have the honor of hosting a guest post by Marie Benedict, the author of the beautiful novel, The Other Einstein. In her post, she shares her experience in doing research and preparing the background for the novel.
The fact that the setting of THE OTHER EINSTEIN consisted of scientifically-minded Zurich at the cusp of the twentieth century nearly turned me away from writing the novel. History, not science, had always been my passion, and initially, this seemed an insurmountable barrier. But once I dug into the electric developments in physics occurring at this time and in this unique place — understanding it on a high level only, of course — I overcame my hesitation and embraced the excitement of the world in which Mileva Maric and Albert Einstein lived and worked in their early years as a couple.
Using this scientific and historical knowledge, I constructed the story of the young couple, linked by their feelings and their passion for physics but ultimately torn apart by personal tragedy. I utilized whatever factual informational I could gather to act as anchors in the story. But because it is the historical research that draws me into stories of the past — in fact, I could not imagine writing a novel without that as a major component — I tried to stay close to the historical record. In the nether spaces where research could not answer questions about the tale, I used a blend of logic and fiction to narrate Mileva’s life as I imagined it must have been. These nether spaces are the reason why THE OTHER EINSTEIN could only be a work of historical fiction, one of the first of many I hope to write about women forgotten by history.
Photo: Marie Benedict archives