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My current WIP is set in London. Yep. The Big Apple. Oh, wait. No, that’s not it. London. City of Angels. No? Huh. Thought for sure…

Um…does London even have a nickname? Or is it just…London?

Herein lies one of the difficulties of writing about a setting that isn’t YOUR setting.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m doing it, so I’m obviously not recommending against it. But using a setting that isn’t yours makes things a lot more difficult.

Photo via Flickr.com Lars Ploughmann

Photo via Flickr.com user Lars Ploughmann. Oh, London. I can see my MC taking a nighttime run on your streets, dodging cabs and bikes, and getting distracted by the beauty of the city lights at night.

I can’t just go outside, take a cab to the place I wish to describe, and double check my facts. I can’t stand on a street corner and take a picture of the exact building I want to describe so I can use it later. I can’t– Okay. Enough on what I can’t do.

What I can do is utilize the sources at my fingertips. Writers these days have a pretty great Internet at our fingertips. This powerful source of information could deconstruct that sentence I just wrote and tell me that “pretty great” was a lousy modifier, and that I should have used something like “fantastic” or “outstanding” or “unbelievable” or…you get the idea.

Photo via Flickr.com Loren Kerns

Photo via Flickr.com user Loren Kerns, “London Shadows.” I can just see my MC walking down this street, hand in hand with her love interest…

But my default is to go to Bing or Google or Pinterest or Flickr and–you guessed it–look up photos of my setting. Flickr is probably one of my favorites, especially for this blog, as you can find photos that you can use commercially or modify, if the rights allow it. Nowadays you can search Bing and Google for them as well, but Pinterest, although a wealth of great photos and settings, aren’t quite so clear in copyrights. Okay, that’s all an aside though. Really, it’s all a distraction. Just like this post is distracting me from my WIP right now.

So because I LOVE London, and because my WIP is all that’s on my mind right now, I’m going to be trying to post once a week, probably Wednesdays, with a few photos that have turned up in my search for inspiration.

Photo via Flickr Berit Watkin

Photo via Flickr.com user Berit Watkin, “Shoreditch.” I can see my MC taking a short cut through this alley, admiring the blue doors as she goes, maybe tripping on the pavement or running into someone at the other end as she emerges too fast.