Thursday, October 14, 2010

Research, Research

Today, I’m over on The Blood-Red Pencil talking about Research.

We’d all like to zip here and there, doing research in the exotic or fun settings, like France or New Zealand or Lockhart, Texas…but it’s not always possible to do first-hand research. On the other hand, you have to get it right or readers will catch your mistakes.

So zip over to The Blood-Red Pencil and contribute your ideas for second-hand research when you just can’t do it first-hand. (‘Course, I’m not talking to you Romance writers. We all know you do only first hand research.)


  1. Speaking of exotic places; have you ever been to Langtry, Texas? It's a (very) small town, close to Rio Grande, with church, post office and general store, and eleven citizens (2001). I happened to stop by on the way to somewhere, and was very fascinated by the town and it's history >:)

    Cold As Heaven

  2. 11 citizens? Reminds me of Val, just outside Joburg.

    Your article on research is great Helen!

  3. Cold As Heaven, I've not been to Langtry. It's real close to the Texas/Mexico border. Probably not a real destination place considering the chaos in Mexico right now. I know Judge Roy Bean was from there.

    Judy, I am embarrassed to say I know nothing about Val or Joburg.

  4. Lockhart...BBQ :)
    Great post on research, too.

  5. Carol, that's a delicious place to do research!

  6. Okay, I'm on my way over now.

    Stephen Tremp

  7. Great suggestion about employing chat rooms for research purposes over at The Blood Red Pencil. Another thought ask a question in your blog and solicit answers from your readers.

  8. I'm writing a story which, for a large portion of the action, is set in New York.

    I have never been to New York.

    So, I ask friends who live in New York.

    I also don't speak Greek, but some of my characters do. I've had to ask for help with that from Greek speakers.

    Sometimes, Facebook and Wiktionary can be very helpful "research" tools.

  9. Facebook, even Twitter, can be a big help. I'm sometimes wary of Wiktionary. I think it and Wikipedia are useful, but need a secondary back up. Who is this Wiki anyway? ;-)

  10. Thank you for linking over, Laura.

  11. I checked it out. I'm lucky that the I write about my life and work. I talk to other mediums and healers and ask a lot of questions. I often think about writing fiction, but I don't have enough time.

  12. Will head on over now to check out your post. I completely concur with Wikipedia. Generally, I avoid that site like the plague since I've already found what I consider to be vital bits of information missing from entries discussing certain figures. As a site that can be added to by anyone there's little trust in me for it. :)


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