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How to Research a Location You Haven’t Actually Been To

While primary source research really is the best way to go, there are a lot of really good methods you can use to research a place you haven’t been to. I’ve used several of these myself.

A Writer's Path

by Helena Fairfax

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, or read any of my books, you’ll know how important setting is to me in my writing. In this post about Richmond Park, for example, I wrote about how I tried to combine the setting for The Antique Love with the theme of the book, and how I used the setting to reveal the strengths and weaknesses of my characters.

So far I’ve been able to visit most of the locations I’ve used in my books. My settings range from Edinburgh to the south coast of France, and they are all within easy reach for me. But sometimes it’s just not possible to get to the place you want to write about. I used to agonise about this. I like to “see” exactly what it is my characters see.

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Curse of the Mummy
‘Shadows & Lies’