One of the things I enjoy the most, and one of the things that slows down my writing, is making sure the details are genuine; even in high fantasy, I think, this is critical to the believable accessibility of the story and, hopefully, makes it more enjoyable on several levels. Whether describing a newspaper article, a train schedule from Carlisle to Northampton, a bottle of old whiskey, or the finer points of an invented royal crest (hint for the second novel, “a twin of holly leaves on either side of the dropping bell of a snowdrop flower”), I love spending the time it takes to research each of these things. I have this idea in my head that some readers might take a passage out of one of my books and “fact-check” me someday, or that an occasional reader who happens to be schooled in botany will take delicious pleasure in the fact that I’ve properly described the Galanthus nivalis and have even used its historical significance to provide another level of meaning. But even if no one ever does, it’s still one of the things I enjoy most about writing. And I hope I get it right…at least most of the time.