While I'm planning and writing the first draft of my WiP I've managed to put myself in research mode. Research is important, especially since I've only experienced so much and sometimes my characters don't want to do the dull and ordinary and how can I write of an experience if I, myself, haven't experienced it?
Research is especially important to the novel I'm planning on writing after I finish my current WiP. Yeah, I've been over to Japan (where I'm planning to have the novel take place), but I don't call myself an expert. I know it's going to take a lot of reading and even asking people who live there about the culture and family aspects of the country (and I guess even another trip over there if I must).
What sort of research do you do? How do you do your research? Do you think research is necessary?