I mentioned in an earlier post, that I would be travelling to Ireland to continue my research for the Dead Dreamer series. Then I had a thought. When I first started writing the Dead Dreamer series ten years ago, I had done no research prior. I just started writing whatever came to me. The interesting thing was, I spoke to a few different people since then, and they were surprised at how my lore was similar to their beliefs of the afterlife. The idea fascinated me enough to want to know more.
While in the middle of writing the second book within the series, I began researching various religions and cultures. My religions professor inspired me to first look into Hinduism with the idea of the Atman. A major plot point developed from that research, inspiring me to move forward.
Over time, I became completely engrossed by Celtic mythology. With the help of some friends, I spent years reading and researching anything I could find that was related to the Celts. Even in graduate school, I was able to use my research for my thesis and further expand my knowledge in the area. I was even inspired to learn some Gaelic [although I’m very behind in those studies].
But research doesn’t stop at books and websites. I wanted to travel to some of these locations to really try and engross myself in the culture and learn as much as I can to really make Dead Dreamer like no other. When I originally thought a trip to Ireland would be impossible, my friend and I took a trip to Boston, Massachusetts. From there, we traveled to America’s Stonehenge in New Hampshire. Although the site is highly debated with its authenticity, it was still a very inspiring trip.
We arrived at peak snow season, so it wasn’t the best time. But we made our way to the site and trekked through so I could get a good look at the scenery. Our clothes were soaked and we were freezing by the end.
There was a time when I thought I would use the location in my series. Sadly, that idea has changed since then.
But my passion for storytelling has driven me to fall deeper into my research books and travel guides. My hope is that Ireland will continue to inspire me as I travel there this summer. Ten years have been leading me to this day. For over ten years, I have wanted to make this trip. And I hope one day, I’ll be able to continue my travels. The next three on my list would be Wales, Scotland, and England.
But for now, the biggest piece of my research can continue.
All of this research leads to one thing: expanding the lore within my own universe. Taking something that has been around for centuries and giving it new meaning. Research and travel are a writer’s best friends. And when a writer is determined enough, nothing will stop them.