In my novel Percival’s Planet, real people interact with characters I have invented. This blog is largely dedicated to the story of Clyde Tombaugh and Planet X, with additional material about the experience of publishing a novel about this historical event. So, for the record, Clyde Tombaugh, V.M. Slipher, and Constance Lowell are real people. Other, minor real characters who appear or are referred to in the novel include Harlow Shapley, Cecilia Payne, Percival Lowell, and some members of the Tombaugh family.
Characters in the novel who are purely invented include Alan Barber, Mary and Hollis Hempstead, Dick Morrow, Teddy Howe, and Felix DuPrie (and his mother). Alan and Mary are very loosely modeled on my grandparents, who met around the same time Alan and Mary did, and, like Mary, my grandmother suffered from delusions all her life. But my grandfather was not an astronomer, and neither he nor my grandmother spent any time in Arizona, as far as I know.
The novel treats all its characters as fictional, in that I have allowed myself to have them say and do anything I want, given very broad parameters as I understand the facts to have been. While the general outline and a good number of the particulars of Clyde Tombaugh’s life in Kansas and Arizona are carefully adapted from historical accounts, I have, throughout, shaped and altered all the historical materials as seemed useful.
This blog is, as far as I can make it, factually accurate (although I have also included, here and there, selections from the novel).