Why do some authors choose to travel for research?
If all has gone to plan, I am currently in Sardinia on a book research trip. That may sound a little technical. So, what exactly is a book research trip? And what do authors get out of them?
What is a book research trip?
For me, it can be anything from a day out at the National Space Centre, to several weeks in a different country. The goal is to participate in as many activities as possible, to learn as much as I can. There will be more information than is actually needed. But that’s OK. I can sift through it all when I get home. The important thing is not to miss anything that could be important later.
You may be wondering why I can’t get that information online or at the library. Why travel when there is so much information available in other ways?
The answer is inspiration
Physically being in a place evokes emotions and sparks sensory experiences. It enables me not just to see and hear what’s it like there, but to touch, smell, and taste things too. Travel allows us to immerse ourselves in other cultures. And see life from different perspectives.
This leads to story ideas we wouldn’t otherwise have. And enables us to write descriptions that allow readers to feel like they’ve been to these places too.
Every author is different. Many don’t need research trips for the type of books they write. For me, they are a fundamental part of my writing process. I know it’s important not to travel too often because of the impact on the environment. So I use my book research trips to combine business travel with family holidays and days out. Because they’re work – but they’re fun as well!
Enjoyed this post?
I’ll be posting about my trip on social media if you’d like to see how it goes.