Yep – we may create our own worlds and our own rules, but that doesn’t exempt us from research.
Here is a list of some of the things I researched while writing my urban fantasy, CHEATER:
• Traditional and contemporary beliefs about death, the gods and angels of death, and the afterlife, including Celtic, Egyptian, Greek, Indian, Norse, Aztec, and Christian.
• Con artists and their “art”, famous cons and schemes, famous con artists
• The Grim Reaper – folklore, history, and portrayal in literature and film
• Death and mortality rates
• Traditionally held beliefs about Limbo
• All sorts of cool techy stuff like hacking into computers, tiny digital cameras, internet scams…
• Slot machines
• Las Vegas and Death Valley – that was a fun trip!
• The Lake Havasu region
• Several locales around sweet home San Diego
• Casinos, their rules, their layout
• The Etch A Sketch
• My jobs, that have offered wonderful insight to the inner workings of a bureaucracy (including a nice collection of memos that served as inspiration…)
• Charles Babbage, his Difference Engine, and his Analytical Engine
While 95% of what I learned didn’t make it into the book (sometimes 10 hours of research becomes 1 line of text), most of these things play a role. Are you intrigued yet?