Even though it takes the longest, and is the least creative, I love the research phase of writing.
Research is when I get to indulge the history geek side of me, and when I get to learn about things that would never come up in my day to day life. For my current WIP I had to expand my private investigator knowledge (I actually went to school for private investigation, but that's another story) and I am also reading a biography of Cleopatra as a side project. It's nice to be learning without feeling forced, like I did in school.
I was a pretty high achiever until I reached high school, then I got caught up. In what, you ask? Life is the simplist answer.
After I got done with high school, college was a revelation. I got to pick what I learned and how I did it, and it was amazing. I miss it sometimes, but I'm not sure I could do it again at this stage in my life.
So I have fun with my research. That old saying 'write what you know' doesn't always work, there are some things that you have to learn before you can write what you know.
Are you wondering about Book 3? I have a pile of research books for that as well. But that one will take time as I am ironing out details before I can even start my research but it is there! So have no fear.