Your Questions

Q

dear Mr. Cornwell I love the Sharpe's series and I have just finished Sharpe's Devil and I was wondering was Bauista really gay in historical fact? and do you know if there will be another Sharpe's film made after challenge? I was also just wondering if you ever considered writing a series or at least a book on Patrick Harper particularly before he and Sharpe meet? I'd love to find out more about why he went into the british army.

Cameron Stewart

A

Fictional, totally fictional

No plans for another film at the moment, but keep your fingers crossed!

No plans for a book on Harper.


Q

Have you ever considered contacting the CS Forester estate for permission to use Horatio Hornblower in one of Richard Sharpe's adventures? Both their adventures take place in the same time period and it seems like these two would have somehow met over the course of the Napoleonic wars. William Krehmeier

A

So they might, and a meeting would be interesting, but I'm not sure I want to pay my royalties to the CS Forester estate, and I'm not sure Forester's myriad fans would necessarily like my portrait of Hornblower, admiring though it might be.


Q

Mr. Cornwell. If I might dive into the Baker rifle debate, do you know how the Baker did when tested against the Kentucky rifle? I've heard that the sturdiness of the Baker was a factor in its being chosen. The Kentucky rifle was regarded as more of a precision hunting gun and did not stand up well to the rigors of wartime use. Also, the Baker's heavier construction made it a better club in close-quarter situations when there was no time to reload. Do you know if there was ever a model of the Baker fitted with a percussion cap? Alan Kempner

A

I don't know whether the Kentucky Rifle was one of those tested at Woolwich, though certainly there were American made rifles in that test (all of them with three-quarters turn rifling, as against the Baker's quarter). And you're right, it was the robustness of the Baker which, as much as its superior accuracy, that recommended it. I have an idea that some Bakers were converted to percussion, but I'm not sure . . . they must have been very late models.


Q

Just finished Sharpe's Fury, thanks, I didn't know I had relative in the South Essex. Now that you've admitted Sharpe was at Bussaco when are you going to tell us the story?

PS I do hope Jack Bullen was there too and did something heroic (obviously he has to die eventually, as all of Sharpe's Lieutenants do - plus he doesn't feature in "later" stories).
William Bullen

A

Did you miss Sharpe's Escape?


Q

In the special, "Sharpe's Challenge: Behind the Scenes", it states that challenge is based on the Sharpe's novels Tiger, Triumph, and Fortress. In an earlier question's answer you cite only two of these books. Is the show in error? Thank you.

Leila

A

Dunno. Maybe they based it in part on all three? But I always thought it was just Tiger and Fortress, and I didn't detect any Triumph in there.


Q

Dear Mr Cornwell; Thank you so much for your wonderfull novel Stonehenge. I loved this book and have told numerous friends to purchase it and read it. Your ability to educate with wonderfull historical facts and information, wound into a fascinating story is remarkable. I had to restrict myself to raeding only a few pages each night, as I didn;t want to put your book down, but wanted the story to last forever. Can you tell me if you have any other similar novels planned, as I find the prehistoric era fascinating, and would love to read more about it from yourself? Thank you gain for such an amazing piece of literature. With warmest regards, Sharon

Dear Bernard, Just finished reading Stonehenge, and starting Sharpe's Fury, may I please request that you make a sequel to the former. I really did not want to finish it, a truly thrilling read. Many thanks to you sir for giving me so many hours of entertainment. Michael Starkey (SAS Member)

A

I'm not planning any, sorry!


Q

Hello M. Cornwell, I want to thank you for the many hours I spent reading your work! I really enjoyed it ! I was wondering, do you alter your writing style when you start a series, is it part of the challenge to continue writing?
Martin Proteau

A

I think the style depends on the subject. I certainly write, say, Uhtred, differently from Sharpe, and it's not just the first person versus third person. But really the book demands its own style, and I guess I just go along.


Q

Mr. Cornwell, I enjoy your work. How much plotting do you do before you start writing? Thank you. Ian

A

Almost none, ain't capable of it. I have a very broad idea of where I want the book to go, then just let the characters sort it out amongst themselves. I'm not saying this is the right way to do it - some writers plot very carefully, and their books are great, but others, like me, leave it to instinct.


Q

Just watched the History Channel's series on the American Revolution, and couldn't help but wonder. If Wellington was around at the time, in your opinion, would he have made a difference in the outcome, or was it just too monumental a task? Did Wellington and Cornwallis ever meet? Was there ever a chance of Wellington fighting in America during the war of 1812? Sorry for the barrage of questions, but there are just so many "what ifs" in history, it's fun to discuss them. Oh yeah, before I forget, I'm a huge fan of all your books, and can't wait for the next one's to come out. May they continue for many, many years to come!
A. Sehic

A

Don't know if Cornwallis and Wellington met. Wellington was invited to take over the land forces in the USA during the war of 1812, and sensibly turned the offer down, explaining that the Americans could always give up ground and so gain time - i.e. the country was simply too big to be defeated by the numbers available, so I suspect he wouldn't have made that much difference - he would have done a lot better, but he couldn't overcome the insuperable difficulty of the size of the war zone.


Q

Hi Mr Cornwell, I am going to be writing a series of books about some of the forgotten heroes of history including names such as Mary Seacole. I was just wondering if there were any other names you could suggest for such a series? Thank you. Daniel.

A

There was a recent biography of Mary Seacole - you might want to find it. I can't think of any names offhand, but I'll put the idea in my mind and see if anything suggests itself . . . sorry, not very helpful.


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