And I am PASSIONATE about musical theatre.
I often wonder when I'm reading a book where the characters are pursuing a sport, a hobby, or a certain career, if the author also has a passion for or experience with that activity. In The Heartless City, Elliot had a passion for painting and Iris had a passion for ornithology (the study of birds), and I had to do research on both, because neither thing is a passion of mine. I also had to do research for the historical aspects of The Hypnotic City, but as far as Philomena's passion for singing and acting went, I was already prepared.
I've loved theatre since I was a kid. My parents owned just about every movie musical on VHS (the old Rogers and Hammerstein classics, every Barbra Streisand movie, etc), we listened to musical soundtracks in the car, and we went to see live shows at the high schools in town and the Salina Community Theatre. As soon as I was old enough, I started taking acting classes and trying out for shows there as well. SCT had and still has an AMAZING youth program. My brother and sister and I went to their camps and performed in their shows every summer. Eventually, my parents joined in as well, and a couple of times all five of us were in the same show together. I continued doing shows in high school and college and even majored in performance for a while. Now my parents and sister still do shows at SCT, my sister choreographs and teaches dance there, my brother is a musician on cruise ships, and I direct high school shows and teach drama as well as English and creative writing. I've also been lucky enough to visit New York and see many Broadway shows, so that aspect of The Hypnotic City came easily to me.
So what about you guys? Do you like reading books about activities you enjoy? And fellow writers, have you ever gotten the chance to write about one of your passions (other than writing)? I know I will always treasure this book especially for that reason.