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17 Jun 2013

When Research Can Be Fun...

Sometimes reading isn't enough for me.  I have tons of books on the paranormal for research purposes but one of my dreams when I have a car is to travel around to these haunted areas for setting, atmosphere and experience.

If I have the opportunity I love to experience as part of my research.  To know what it feels like to walk the streets hoping there isn't a zombie around the corner.  To spend the night in a known haunted hotel.

In three weeks I'm getting chased by zombies again for 2.8 Hours Later and if you're wanting to write a zombie novel this is an awesome way to research.  You really get into survival mode.  While I knew this was all a game when we started walking from the starting area, away from the registration point and into a deserted area my heart couldn't stop pounding and we actually had to stop at one point because we were convinced we heard rustling in the bushes.  We were so sure a zombie was there, lurking.

Now I have an opportunity to act like my ghost hunting characters in Lapse and Consequences.

Haunted Happenings organises ghost hunts around some of the most haunted locations in the UK.  An experienced team of ghost hunters invites anyone who has interests in ghosts to come along and take part in their investigations.  You get to use their equipment and carry out your own vigils.  I've always wanted to go on a ghost hunt but since these two WiPs have focused on ghost hunting it's the perfect research not just to experience a ghost hunt and get into character but to learn more about the process and what people use to conduct investigations.  There's one coming up in August at a museum which is right near where I live so me and Pete are going to book and take part.  I can't wait to learn things for my two WiPs!

 Have you ever ventured out for research? Gone to the places that inspired your WiPs setting? Tried out a hobby your character likes to understand it? :)


  1. I think the best thing I ever got to do in the name of research was go shooting in the US. To actually feel the weight of a gun and fire one really makes you appreciate the terrifying power of them. It's one thing to watch it all on TV, but it's something else entirely to use a gun and experience its deafening sound. And it is nowhere near as easy to hit a target as Hollywood would have you believe.

  2. There are a lot of things I *wish* I could research, but end up living vicariously through the internet (aka YouTube). I'm in the rural Midwest, though, so the opportunities are limited unless I travel quite a way.
    That ghost-hunting adventure sounds exciting, unless you're like me and wouldn't go near something like that. :P :) You'll have to tell us what it is like!!

  3. I haven't yet visited somewhere for the sole purpose of researching a novel, but places I've been to in the past have certainly influenced the way I imagine some of my literary locations. Perhaps if/when I'm able to support myself and my family from my writing, I'll take some "research" trips--perhaps to Finland, or Scotland... :)

    I hope you have a lot of fun with your research, Robin!