A Research Trip

Once or twice a year, my Dad likes to travel to a casino a little over an hour away from us and play the slots. A couple years ago, since I’d never tried it, he convinced me to go with him. Yesterday was my third trip, and there were 8 of us who all car-pooled there¬†together. It’s a lot of fun. I haven’t really won any money at it yet, but neither have I lost much, and it’s a neat way to spend some extra time with my parents (who are awesome).

Last fall when we went, I found this cool slot machine with panthers, jaguars, jewels, and these two guys with claw marks on their faces who I assume are were-cats of some sort. Cats? Yes, please! I had fun with it, and it sparked some ideas for a scene or two in my next novel. So when we went back to the casino yesterday, I soon found it and played happily, swimming in imagery.

I joked about being at the casino to “do research,” but I really did pay particular attention to the sights, sounds, and smells of the place. I let myself daydream as I played “my” machine, story ideas rolling around in my mind. When I got back, I wrote down a couple pages of notes. The casino scenes are part of a sub-plot of the novel as a whole, which is still taking shape gradually. It’s kind of a paranormal mystery or thriller, which is quite different for me. It was sparked by a suggestion my brother made, so I’m thankful to multiple family members for the inspiration! It will probably be my NaNo work this fall, unless I can’t help but start writing it sooner.

All of this really just serves to flesh out this post, as I don’t have much to report since Sunday. Blogging is on track. Yoga is still rockin’ my world. I took a look at the outline for my next work of non-fiction, but I haven’t done anything much with it yet other than make a few notes on revisions and additions.

I hope you’re combining work with play like I am, and having a really fun week!

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