Research is an essential part of writing. Unless, you know, you are writing about your home town, your business, and what happened last Wednesday. But in order to write an interesting work of fiction, you will probably need to step outside that safe circle.
I decided to place my second Regency Banquet story in France. Oops. I needed there to be military action between Britain and France in 1806 or so. I could just ignore the fact that no such battles occurred, but I want to attract regular Regency readers, and a few of them might just know the truth. With help from smart people on Scribophile and history books (okay, Google and Wiki), I found out that there was some activity in Belgium at the time.
Oops. Belgium wasn’t called Belgium until the 1830s. The area was mostly called the Lowlands, with a nice ethnic area of Walloon. Saved! Now my French lady of noble birth hiding in a farm works out perfectly.
My paranormal romance (sadly on the back burner) starts in Florida, moves to Nassau, with a goal of Cuba for the real action. Google Maps street view of Florida is awesome. Nassau is pretty good. Even Cuba gave up enough information for me to move forward. Until I had to set it aside for all the other projects.
I love my Regency story, The Viscount’s Mouse. And for the cover, I decided to use some period pieces that are in the public domain. English cottages are pretty easy to come by. But when actually writing the piece, I needed more inspiration. This one is exquisite. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/514606694892241458/
And a stable. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/514606694896695457/
Types of Ships. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/514606694897083274/
Basements where a person could be chained up. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/514606694896891661/
And since Parker Hurley, my inspiration for the Curtis twins, has an awesome collection of tattoos, I decided Roland Curtis should get an animal in the family crest inked on his shoulder. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/514606694896764790/
But I digress. As a writer, I know I will be reaching out all over the world, and maybe even creating worlds for my stories. As a reader, I want the setting of the story to be as authentic as possible, and not bump me out of the story with some really obvious error. And all this work is totally worth it.
Thanks for reading, I’ll be back on Thursday.