Most sailing ships take what they call trainees, who pay to be part of the crew. The Picton Castle takes people who are absolutely raw recruits. But you can’t just ride along. You’re learning to steer the ship, navigation you’re pulling lines, keeping a lookout in the galley you’re cooking.
I acted in theater and I took film classes when I was 12 and just obsessed over it. I loved it and spent hours and hours in the film studio learning and watching.
I love learning about different dialects and I own all sorts of regional and time-period slang dictionaries. I often browse through relevant ones while writing a story. I also read a lot of diaries and oral histories.