My new project is set in Portland, Maine. It involves gun smuggling, a good topic for a port city. Lots of my research can be done on the Internet, but some has to be direct, in person. So I needed to see locations and picture events there. Portland has the nearest airport to where I live, so it was convenient to visit prior to a trip to Washington, D.C. to visit friends. First, I went to the Old Port, the renovated part of the old city that has trendy shops, restaurants, and condos on the waterfront. I walked around the docks and took picture after picture with my trusty digital camera. Then I drove farther along the harbor toward the more industrial section so I could figure out where my murder takes place. I found a really spooky spot beneath a bridge but I have to go back at night to see how dark it is. I may freak myself out.
That's it. Researching can be fun, but it can suck a writer in so you want to put it all in the book. I have to rein myself in.