I'm currently hard at work on BLOOD MOON, making certain that my locations are as close to accurate as possible. Now mind you, I've never been to Greece--which is where the majority of Blood Moon takes place, but I am armed with Google Earth, the internet, and what's left of my Cafe Du Monde chickory coffee.
It makes me wonder if we truly consider how much time and effort is actually spent researching for a novel. It's a vast amount of work that a lot of people might not take into consideration. For example, I researched the hell out of Greece, and I'm still not sure I have it all down pat. *HINT...if any of you are familiar with Greece, email me!
For example, in October, I visited New Orleans, Louisiana for the very first time. While part of the trip was for the pleasure of seeing the city I'd only dreamed of visiting, research was a large part of my decision to go. The third novel of the MYTHIC series, tentatively titled ASHES OF RECKONING, takes place in New Orleans. Thank goodness I had the company of friends who are as equally interested in my series and assisted in building MY New Orleans. I chose characters' homes, locations for fictional establishments mentioned in the story, and made certain the factual landmarks were accurate. At the end of the trip my camera was exhausted!
In the end, the work is worth the final product. As a reader, when I visit locations that were used as settings in my favorite novels, I do my own unofficial tour of both fictional and factual landmarks. Don't think for one second that I didn't go on my own Dark-Hunter tour while in New Orleans. Many nights were spent drinking at the Absinthe House in Pirate's Alley while I imagined Acheron strolling down the brightly lit street at three in the morning. *wicked grin*
My question to the readers: When visiting locations that were used in the settings of your favorite novel, do you find yourself on your own tour, searching for places from the novels?
To the authors: How far would you go, or have you gone, in the name of research?