I’ve shared a few Facebook updates about the fun things I’ve had the chance to research for my book. I thought you might get a kick out of them, so I’ve listed them out for you.

1. I got to ask a cop what he would do if I were attacked in an alleyway. A friend of mine is a cop, and a certain character of mine gets attacked by a crazy guy. So what better way to research for my book than text my cop friend and ask him just what the protocol is in that situation. Don’t worry, I told him it was just for research.

2. I learned how to change a tire. I have a scene where my main character gets a flat and has to attempt to change her own tire. Naturally, I had no idea how to do this. I mean I know you essentially have to take the bad tire off and put the new one on, but it turns out there’s a whole page of steps and tricks. At least now I know what to do in case of an emergency (though that doesn’t mean I could actually do it.)

3. I figured out what the heck a first down is. Sometimes I’m ashamed to say I’m an American who doesn’t understand football. But writing this book changed that for me. I mean I’m not stupid, I knew what a touchdown and an end zone were. I knew that a quarterback is really important. But I just didn’t understand all of the positions or the first down, second down thing. But now when I watch my Longhorns defeat the Sooners this year, I’ll have a better clue of what’s going on.

4. I learned how to do cheerleading stunts. My main character is a cheerleader and I had no idea what you call those awesome flips and poses. But now I’m more literate in the cheerleading world, and I might or might not have tried a liberty pose in front of my full-length mirror.

5. I figured out how to win a street fight. There are actually steps. And while this one may make my search history look a little scandalous I’m actually glad I read this article. The only downside is that now I’m convinced I’m a ninja, capable of kicking butts and taking names.

I look forward to what other silly things I’ll get to research, and don’t worry, I’m sure I’ll report back to you!