This post was written for the Author Toolbox Blog Hop where we share our new discoveries on the craft of writing, editing, querying, marketing, publishing, and blogging tips. Posted every third Wednesday of the month. For rules and sign-up click here.
How I got there.
It may not be the same for you, but here’s what I did. On my library’s main menu, I clicked on the Research tab. That led to the Gale Courses. From there I chose what I wanted: Research Methods for Writers, and Mystery Writing. That was where my heart was but there were many more to choose from.
In my world of writing and my day-to-day life, I want quick direct answers. I don’t want to go down the rabbit hole and spend hours digging through information for one fact when I’m only touching on information in passing. My goal is to avoid infodumps. For me and for my readers.
I retrieved the fact to keep to the truth and that’s where it ended for me.
And it turned out that sometimes my quick in-and-put plan failed. If anyone has read Minor Error, you’d know what I mean. My facts were not as accurate as they should have been. Eventually, I moved it from the sci-fi genre to the sci-fantasy genre because I loved the images I created as inaccurate as there were.
The Course Pointed out that:
- I needed to make a plan. (Mind-maps work well for this.)
- I should determine what exactly I need to know to figure out where I need to go.
- I might start with an internet search and land up anywhere.
And landed up:
- National Agricultural Library
- National Library of Medicine
- Library of Congress
- Library and Archives of Canada
- Larken Kerwin Library (Space info)
- Canadian Assoc of Research Libraries
- Canadian Museum of History
- Canadian Museum of Nature
- Library And Archives Canada | Public Records
Now that I’ve stuck my toe in, I know I’ll be more diligent. I want my readers to enjoy what I’ve imagined and not get kick out of the story because I was sloppy. Bottom line: I will still make mistakes because I’m human, not because I’m lazy.
How deep do you dive-in when seeking facts? Any links you’d care to share?