Monday, October 4, 2010

Modern . . . Familiarity

Oddly enough, research for a historical gave me the idea for this one. Which is, in turn, about research. =)

Though researching for a contemporary doesn't usually require the amount of involvement for me that researching for a historical does, there's always some. I still have to learn about where it's set, about the professions of my characters, about the ins and outs of whatever drives the story. Sometimes that means staring at boat pictures for a while, sometimes it means reading about the CIA, sometimes it involves giving myself a refresher course in insurance.

But you know one really great thing about that kind of research? It isn't immediately outdated. As I was looking up towns in England yesterday for a Regency, I kept running into the frustration of "Well, sure, that's what it looks like now. What did it look like then?"

That's not a problem I run into while choosing a town for a contemporary book. I can use Google images. I can use Google maps and even Google Earth. Heck, I can take a trip and explore it myself (ahh, Outer Banks. I miss you so.)

That said, it still must be done, all that research. Because if you set a story somewhere and then totally misportray the area, the people who live there will know. Luckily, I love diving into discovery of new places and things. So much fun!

And now to work I go. There's a Book in a Week challenge going on in one of my groups, and I've got 2,000 words to write today. Ta ta!

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