Hatching a novel..

So here’s how it starts. A name. A woman on a bridge getting ready to jump.

And then less than two days later, it requires research.

Okay, so if her son dies at 31, how old is she? How old was she when he was born? Because we have to know when she got married and what year she graduated from college. If the son was 3 when they divorced, how long ago was that?

Oh, and does Millbrae, CA have a bridge? If so, how deep is the water? Is this feasible? How many people jump from bridges each year? Golden Gate? San Diego-Coronado? Seattle…

Is it feasible to commute from Millbrae to Cal Tech. Answer: no it is not! It’s over 6 hours away! Good grief. Ok, so probably Berkley. If her ex has moved to San Mateo – how far south is that from Millbrae? Because we have weekly visitation.

Does Cal Tech have an engineering program anyway? Yes. Bio Engineering, Chemical Engineering, regular.

In my last two novels, I spent a lot of time on names. Because my characters were alive from the Oklahoma Land Run through Vietnam and to the present. The names had to be popular names in the year they were born.

You get the picture! Writing is constant research even without adding historical components. It all has to make sense to the reader.

So back to Google search. Today I need to know how they treated gifted children in 1970. I think I know. My career was in education. But that particular year? Better be sure!

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