I have spoken to many authors in the past and each has their own writing style and the way they go about writing their book. My approach is to look at the information I have gathered and then commence writing the section where I have researched the most. This may mean that I will commence a draft chapter in the middle of the book.
The first chapter I have finished (in draft) is “Chapter 2 – Baptism of Fire (Nov 43 – Dec 43)”. This chapter is broken into two parts but covers off the arrival of the unit on the Eastern Front, the attack on Shitomir in Nov 1943 and the offensive action towards Malin in December 1943. The chapter finishes on Christmas Day 1943 with the men of Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 280 celebrating in their dug-out around warm stove-ovens before being alerted to a major Russian offensive across Army Group South’s front line.
With many Divisional war diaries missing information or absent altogether, it is very hard and time consuming putting the pieces together. However, I am fortunate to have access to a number of diaries which happen to fill in the gaps I find in the war diaries – so I am happy with the first draft result at this stage. I will have to go back over it again in the near future as I have found further information since finishing the first draft.
I wanted to provide an update on how this book was progressing.