Research – Fun Facts to Know and Tell – Or Not

reading in bed

Sometimes I’m looking for a man with glasses…ahem…he’s wearing glasses

I don’t know if readers realize it or not, but I do a LOT of research for each of my books. The good news is, I don’t use it all. The bad news is, I still have all of it rolling around in my brain and filling up space on my computer. Hey, I might use it sometime.

Whether the hero has tattoos or not is as important as their placement

For Explosive Combination, I poured over maps of Colombia, looked at satellite pictures of cities and terrain, and watched YouTube videos of the areas I wrote about. I hunted Google Images for everything from the banks of the Cauca River to the clothing worn by hookers. You’d be amazed at what you can find on line. I pulled up facts on volcanoes and discovered that Purace erupts about every ten years so I sent my characters there. While exploring Cali, I found out it is a very dangerous place with more than 2,000 unsolved murders annually blamed on the drug trade and politics.

great smile on fireman

A hero’s smile needs to be great. Yes, ladies, he’s smiling. Oh, and the chest hair question may take hours to investigate.

One of my favorite things to do is hunt real estate. I used to be a Realtor, licensed in Georgia, North Carolina and Virginia. As an author, I get to pick out the houses where my characters live and since they are most often wealthy, budget isn’t a factor which makes it even more fun. Last time I showed you pictures that inspired the Girard Compound I used for Christmas in Cancun which will be out in November.

grey hair

Hair color is an item that may take hundreds of pictures before I find just the one.

By far, though, the best research is finding my hero. Sometimes it takes me hours to find just the right man. So today I’m sharing a few future heroes.


To see more of my research, check out my Pintrest page:

4 thoughts on “Research – Fun Facts to Know and Tell – Or Not

  1. I do that also, KaLyn. For Cold Day in Hell, I took a virtual river cruise narrated in Spanish on the Atrato River in the Darien region which spans Columbia and Panama –it was on YouTube. Used satellite maps also to find my landing spots and forks and whatever in the river as it wended its way to the Atlantic Ocean. I love research. To write effective descriptive narrative I, like you, need to see, hear, smell or feel it. Since i have been in subtropical climates – I know what heat and humidity feel like and have been in swamps before. But I needed the visuals. This is why I like writing in northern climates more often since I live where there are four seasons and most of my trips have been skiiing and mountains. Oh — and Las Vegas and San Francisco. 🙂


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