By Accident may be my last police procedural crime novel set in Southern California. Moving back home to Canada, specifically Ottawa, Ontario, I can’t hear the shush of the ocean waves on Santa Monica Beach any longer, or the buzz of traffic on Wilshire Boulevard, or the crowds on the Pier.
Until I started writing The King of Next Week, my historical research focused on the medieval period: surgery during the fourteenth century in Europe, clockworks in China during the Mongol invasions, references to werewolves in eleventh century Wales. But during a visit to Phippsburg, Maine, to give a talk about writing, I became intrigued by the history of the area.
In order to write historical novels with accurate detail I spend a lot of time researching, and I must admit, I love it. In years past, researching required trips to university and museum libraries, hunting through archives and microfiche. Occasionally, I still research that way.
In the heart of Fresno County’s prime agricultural region sits Kearney, a world-renown research facility owned by the University of California. The largest of nine off-campus research and extension centers, Kearney has been the base for cutting-edge research for 45 years, helping San Joaquin Valley agriculture become a $16 billion industry.