Research Can Be Tough – Or Not

reading in bed

Sometimes I’m looking for a man who wears 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:


About KaLynCooper

​KaLyn Cooper’s romances blend fact and fiction with blazing heat and heart-pounding suspense. Twenty-two years as a military wife has shown KaLyn the world, and thirty years in PR taught her that fact can be stranger than fiction. She leaves it up to the reader to separate truth from imagination. She, her husband, and bird dog live in Eastern Tennessee on a micro-plantation filled with gardens, cattle, and quail. When she’s not writing, she’s at the shooting range or paddling on the river.
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