One of the things I learned pretty quickly as I started writing novels on my own is how hard it is to describe places and movement through a scene without some type of roadmap.
Just going by what you can visualize in your head doesn’t always translate right on the page. Well, at least in my case it doesn’t. Maybe the uber authors like James Patterson and Nora Roberts don’t have to get photo inspirations or map out a location to describe it in their books. If I ever catch up to their level, I might not have to either.
But until then, I go hunting for some type of photo inspiration to help me with the descriptions.
There are times, though, when drawing out a map of my imagination is the best way to go. When I decided to make Julian live on a boat in the marina, I based that off of numerous marinas I’d visited from Bermuda to Newport to Kemah to the Bahamas to Maya Riviera. I had photos to choose from, but really what I wanted was a mash-up of elements from all the marinas I’d seen in my travels.
So, I created my own drawing to help me describe the marina in the book. Y’all know I love art, but that doesn’t make me an artist. Don’t judge it too harshly!