I Love Research!

Photo I took of Grizz Flat

No matter what genre I write, there is always research. Did I say I love research? LOL The current work in progress is the 6th Gabriel Hawke novel. You would think setting the book in the county where I grew up and having had a ride-along with the State Trooper of the Fish and Wildlife Division I’d have everything I need to write the book.

I don’t and I’m having fun learning about muzzleloading rifles, rendezvouses, shooting competitions, and the general lifestyle of the people who travel to muzzleloader events.

Did you know that they not only have shooting competitions with the muzzleloading rifles, but they also have knife throwing and long bow competitions? And they all use an alias while at the events.

I contacted the person in charge of the Facebook page for the local (to Wallowa County) Muzzleloading Club to learn about the club, the rendezvous they hold every year, and all I could that would help me enhance my story. They have vendors who sell articles and clothing of the early 1800s the time period they represent while at the events.

I even drove to Grizz Flat where they hold the Rendezvous to get photos, see the area, and figure out how to set up the story.

The premise of the murder happens to be something the State Trooper told me about when I did my ride-along. He stopped on a road, across the river from Grizz Flat and pointed to the camping area. “See that campfire to the left?” I nodded. “A vehicle rolled over the campfire and caught on fire. A man died. They say he was drunk, passed out, and must have bumped the gear shirt. But after investigating, we discovered he’d had an argument with his wife.”

I said, “It couldn’t have rolled, the ground is too flat. And how coincidental would it be for the vehicle, if he’d put it in gear, to stall over the campfire. I say it was homicide.”

The trooper said, “That was what all the investigators said, but the D.A. said it was an accident.”

That is the story I am writing for this Hawke book. The vehicle is found burning over a campfire and the victim is in the vehicle. This time, Hawke will push to make sure the killer is caught and the D.A. prosecutes.

Have I mentioned the theme of my books is justice? 😉

9 thoughts on “I Love Research!

  1. Fascinating intuition you have there! And I agree, there’s no way the vehicle could have rolled. Even if the gear shift was bumped. Anyway, your mention of the muzzleloading intrigued me. I belonged to a muzzleloading group up here in Ontario for many years. Good luck with the book, it sounds interesting!

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  2. And I learned something new. If you use the featured photo do not also put it in the post. LOL


  3. Thanks Missye! It doesn’t hurt to have beautiful scenery be part of where I research. 😉 I find the research so much fun, but I do end up down some rabbit holes and have to claw my way back out to get back to what I was really researching.


  4. Those are SO pretty, Paty! Like exercise, I find research a chore–I suppose it depends on the topic, and once I’m down that rabbit hole, I’ll cross-reference for weeks on end–but if it enriches my books like lifting or spin classes do for the body and mind, I suspect it’s worth it. The alternative–not doing it–could be a disaster unrealized. Awesome post! Those pictures alone are worth the price of admission! 😁😁

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