In the past week, it's become increasingly clear that I need to get some answers from the police. I mean, I can write a scene the way I imagine it would go down. I can use information I've picked up from reading, watching movies and television, and stories I've heard. But I want my work to be as real as possible. I don't want people to read it and say, "Um, yeah. It wouldn't happen like that!" Last week, I e-mailed the city police and got a call back from an officer. It was very exciting. She said she'd ask around and get me some information I need about Minors in Possession (of alcohol).

But then last night, I saw an acquaintance who happens to be a detective. I told her what I'm working on and she said, "What you need to do is go on a ride-along."

Then she gave me the phone number for a man who can hook me up and said for me to tell him that she told me to call.

I haven't had a chance to make the call yet (I left the number in a drawer at work! Grrr!), but I'm pretty excited about it. Talk about REAL.