I have not been closemouthed about my passion for research. I love going on quests for information, love fact checking far too much.
And it’s fun to boot about the web, discovering places and things, learning about people and their occupations.
Googling and bouncing about the internet from one site to another is what I call ‘breaktime.’
Now, sometimes, this fact checking is (frankly) infuriating. I recently spent an hour trying to ascertain if the paid street parking in one area of Montreal used meters or stickers or both. And there are many memes out there about the strange search histories of murder mystery authors and how some of our questions could make others quite nervous.
Meanwhile, I get caught up with searching for artwork and architecture, songs to add mood, textbooks and novels to add authenticity to my work. (I almost errantly mentioned a gorgeous coffee table book in my second mystery… that hadn’t been published in the year in which my story is set! This is why writers must check and double check their facts.)
I’ll be working on my author notes before ‘A Brutal Eclipse‘ is completed, mentioning real-life inspiration for my fictional locations, clarifying which artists in my second gothic-thriller are real-life and which ones I completely fabricated.
Today, I came across a former mansion in Montreal that is now a museum. And I found this stained glass window. It is so lovely.
Stained glass window, 1906, Louis-Joseph Forget House, Montreal, Quebec
I am so fortunate to be a writer in this era, when the world is at my fingertips, when I can virtually visit cities, countries and landmarks. Obviously, viewing the wind blowing leaves past your window is not the same as bracing yourself against that very same wind, your cheeks damp, fighting to catch your breath as you teeter for a moment, one gust almost knocking you off your feet. The view is different than the experience.
Still, I am grateful for these everyday finds– tidbits and tantalizers, snapshots of wonders, and windows so stunning that they seem like masterpieces.