Sunday, April 1, 2012

Research is your Friend

I had to laugh, last night I'm on the phone with an editor/writer/friend of mine and she is editing a story for someone who very obviously did not do enough research. I've also had this happen. I'm reading along and then this piece will leap and nearly scream at me and I have to ask the question- did you do any research at all?? And of course the answer is usually no.

So...if you haven't done the research, or at least did a quick google of whatever it can you write about it? You lose credibility with your readers which is the first step to being a dusty cover on your own bookshelf. If you are writing sci-fi or fantasy, you do have some leeway, but you have to give the reader your world, and then stay with it. You can't go from jet-packs to driving a 57 Chevy and expect to have people stay with you. Like wise, if it's a definite period of time, make sure you check your sources, pull up old newspapers and look for the ads. I recently found one for a well known eatery that used to serve a roast beef dinner with 2 sides and a drink for 3.95. Oh to have those days back. It was also the days of bell bottom jeans and things with fringe( don't ask) if you weren't born until 1990, you may never have seen any of these images- you need to do some recon before you write.

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