Friday, May 14, 2010

Research: You Never Know Just What Might Turn Up

"Sometimes when you take another look, you will find something to be grateful for that you might otherwise have overlooked." Elizabeth Elliot

Isn't it amazing when we find something we're not even looking for at all? Research can be like that at times. As a former reference librarian, I enjoy searching for information and finding answers. But sometimes, as writers, we can make unexpected discoveries that can actually help us while crafting our stories.

Maybe you've been trying to determine just the right expression for a 1930's character's to use when you hear Johnny Depp say "like nobody's business" in the movie Public Enemies. Or maybe you want some in depth information on thespians in turn of the century New York, and then you stumble upon just the right book at a flea market--for $2.00! Perhaps you're trying to envision a dinner party from the 1940's, and when flipping through channels, find an old movie depicting just that. Or while visiting the museum, you see a furniture exhibit that can help you develop a description for a bedroom in 1889.

Could be that we're more attuned to what's around us when we're creating narratives. However, finding something that helps us when we least expect it, is the most fun and unexpected part of research!

What have you found to be grateful for lately?

No comments: