THE FACE required quite a bit of research in several areas:  first I read a book on beauty and its effects on people–and yes, there are effects.  Even babies show a pronounced preference for symmetrical, or “beautiful” faces.  Beautiful people do generally have an easier time of things.  

I also had to research the obvious areas:  the CIA, face transplants, Treacher Collins Syndrome, and poppy/opium production. Though I’ve been a huge fan of the TV show Alias, I quickly discovered that I couldn’t rely on the show for any research–the show is designed for drama, not reality, and most of the situations in it are unreliable.  I did manage to sneak a reference to the show into the manuscript, though.  🙂 
When it came to the story’s setting, I relied on a trip my husband and I paid to Spain last spring. While we were driving up the coast, I spied an old church on a rocky mountain out in the sea.  The mountain was big enough for only one building, but the place was haunting in its beauty.  That’s the location I had in mind when I wrote the story.  (I’ve uploaded a photograph). 
The information about the trauma drug and “brain printing” is absolutely accurate, as is the computer jargon, if you’re into that sort of thing.  And yes, if you had a give a gun to a blind man, you’d give him the one I described near the end of the book. I have to thank my friend and gun expert Tom Morrisey for that information.  
So–as with most of my books, I spent a few days doing “big picture” research, then I jumped in and began writing.  I looked up the smaller things as I went along and discovered what I needed.  It’s all a learning process. 
Tomorrow: the writing. 


  1. Kathy

    Very interesting. And very true about faces. My youngest daughter was born with a cleft lip and palate, webbing on the neck (just had surgery in Sept), missing fingers and toes. There were some very immature reactions to her from adults before her cleft repairs and even now her face isnt’ quite right. But she has an awesome personality so those who know her are drawn to her. You can follow the link to my blogs and she on them. Actually, you may remember her singing to you at the Atlanta CBA (or not).

  2. Smilingsal

    “Beautiful people do generally have an easier time of things.” Oh, that’s why my life is so simple. 😉

  3. kayla

    very nice blog some how i found you looking for things on our sons birth defect esophageal atresia.

  4. Mocha with Linda

    Wow. The trauma drug and “brain printing” were eye openers when I read the book. And as I was reading, I kept thinking “she really had to do lots of different research on this one.”

    That is a beautiful church. It always fascinates me to imagine how they got all the building materials up their so many years ago. No cranes or helicopters!

  5. Lori

    I made a quick trip by my local grocery store for one thing, and guess what I found? Your book, The Face for only $6.99, I can’t wait to get started, but I will probably be up all night. 🙂

  6. Angi

    Yeah, I owe it to you that I spent a summer watching all the Alias Seasons on DVD! I never watched it while it was on TV – but read on your blog a year or two ago how much you liked it so I tried it and was hooked! Thanks! Sounds like I’ll love The Face as well!


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