If research were a Transformer it would be named Distractionator, but it would be an Autobot because it's totally necessary and good.
NaNo. *Sigh* If you've been reading along on my blog, you know that I already have my songs and lyrics, and have created something of a poem to lead me. As of a few days ago, I have my characters named (purposefully) and am now writing little blurbs and summaries of each chapter. Generally I do this as I go, but with the goal of 2000 words a day and the estimated chapter size of 4600 words, I'm feeling like it'd be best to have something to work with ahead of time. So I can finish. And so I can celebrate Thanksgiving without excessive guilt and freaking out.
Anyway, I'm planning Chapter 1 and my MC (Laurel- $5 for real if you can guess what/why) has Bunco plans for her Friday night. (Because she's a suburban mom and that's what a lot of suburban moms do one Friday night a month.) I actually have never played Bunco, but I understand it uses dice and a ton of wine must be involved. So now I have to look up Bunco and figure out how to play. And I'm considering hosting a party one night this month so I can see how it plays out. Or you could just invite me to your Bunco night and I'll bring a bottle. Whichever.
So I'm only in Chapter 1 planning and already totally distracted, and it reminds me of all the research I've done for past novels. With JALR I was all up in Millennium Park, the Shedd Aquarium, and running.
WCP had me researching dresses, dresses, and more dresses. And baseball. The story takes place during the 2003 NLCS/ALCS and World Series. I now know more than I should about those games/series. Truly. Want to see my notes?
ATW takes place mostly in MC Amanda's condo, so I had to do Chicago neighborhood and housing research (and am still getting listing emails), then had to figure out how the condo's interior looked. I spent an entire morning drawing a rough sketch.
And then I had to decorate, so spent over an hour looking at Persian rugs. I found the perfect one, and at a deal. Amanda was so proud of me.
It's a huge time-consumer, but I think that the extra research I do as a writer makes me more able to see my character's world. I want to understand how she lives. And I want my readers (all two of you) to be able to experience it as well. Just like you're there, like you've fallen into a Pensieve and are watching, rather than reading words on a page.
Listening to: my NaNo playlist