I love stories that help me escape reality and take me to worlds with magical creatures or have unrealistic relationships. I also love to read stories based on the regency period, Pride and Prejudice for example. These types of books and stories catch my attention and pull me away from the harsh realities of life.
As an author I have the opportunity to write whatever I want when I make up a story and for the most part, can't be contradicted because, well, I made it up. It's my story and if I want a purple and green dragon that spits acid bubbles, turns invisible and flies without wings, I can do that.
What I didn't ever realize while writing my fantasy series, was how hard it would be to write something for this time frame. My current book is based in modern day time, it has no dragons, no wizards or my own version of the grim reaper. Writing something that is fictional, but needs to be realistic is hard. The amount of time I've spent researching different topics, talking to professionals in their respective fields so I don't write something that is inaccurate and not believable takes me completely out of my comfort zone. How can I write about survival skills, if I have no idea what it takes to survive? I have no experience in this field except the few episodes I watched of Bear Grylls on television. How can I write about seizures, medicine or hospitals without having a knowledge of them to begin with?
I have gained an enormous amount of respect for those authors that write non-fiction. I have gained respect for people who specialize in certain careers that people like me have to research forever just so we don't make their careers look like a joke.
Stepping out of my comfort zone has been an eye opening experience. I have learned so much in my research about so many different careers, life saving techniques, hospital procedures and many more. I'm grateful that I've been blessed by so many different ways to discover and learn things I never knew before, like escaping from a moving train. Who knew there was an actual way to do it without just jumping off?!
So here is to all those people that are part of these careers that I've had to study, or have been on the other end, actually needing survival skills to survive something real. I'm grateful I only have had to research and write rather than actually experience all the things I've learned while stepping out of my comfort zone.