When I began to write Believe Me I was amazed at how little I knew about the physical world around me. My main character, Lucy Delano, is an astrophysicist at the University of Maryland so I had to know something about stars and the universe, right? I started, as I often do when I begin research on a subject I know very little about, in the children’s library. I like books with big writing and lots of pictures.
I would bring these books back home and delve in. A great by product of this ritual was that my children would delve in too. We would sit down and wonder at the pictures and marvel at the facts.
Why the sky is blue.
How far away we are from the closest star outside our solar system.
How old the universe is.
The location of Mommy’s car keys.
One of our favorite books was Merlin’s Tour of the Universe by the director of the Hayden Planetarium, Neil de Grasse Tyson. Only when I had tackled the basics was I allowed to move onto some great books like:
A Brief History of Time by Stephen W. Hawking
Big Bang by Simon Singh
Cosmos by Carl Sagan
The Canon by Natalie Angier
All of which reminded me how little I knew and, even more, how little I know. Sometimes I don’t even know what questions to ask. But as that great brainy dude, Einstein, once said, The important thing is not to stop questioning.
Even if the answers sometimes make your head ache!
It’s Believe Me’s publication day today. Wish me luck….
photo by rAmmoRRison (flickr)