By: McKenna Jeffries
Now that you have your idea started to
research and are confused. The dreaded thought of research probably
puts your teeth on edge like it did to me. I realized that research
doesn't have to be tedious. So I developed a little trick I like to
first step of researching is very simple. If you want to be a writer
you probably already love to read. When I say “read” your response
maybe “ Oh I do that anyway”. Yes I know you read a lot but the type
of reading I’m talking about is “ interest “. This type of
reading is so you can study the style of the different a writer’s.
While reading ask your self a few of these questions.
1.) What type of
voice do they use?
2.) What are the
descriptive phrases they use to describe their characters, place, and
3.) How do they
make you become a part of the scene?
4.)What are the
difference and similarities in the writer’s style?
5.) How does this
novel make me feel or what are the sense it invokes?
These are a few of
the question you should ask yourself as you read with interest.
The greatest resource tool you have is yourself and the people around
you. Use the experience of how you parents or grandparents met and
fell hopelessly in love. Put your own spin on it. The funny thing that
happened to you as you went to the grocery store could turn into how
your characters meet. The talk you had with your friends, story you
heard and the list goes on is all thoughts may garner information for
The library is a great place to start your search for facts. I
personally love libraries. Go look around enjoy the atmosphere most
people there are book lovers like yourself. I like to go and take a
peek as I walk at what others are reading. I even ask people if they
read any good books lately. Then they go on to describe what they have
read I take mental notes of things that they remember and found of
The attitude you go in with to find information will help you. If you
go in gritting your teeth or morseful then this process will be
tedious and you will not get much accomplished. Go do research with a
positive attitude and you can find so many fascination things that you
may miss. Don’t view this as a chore but something fun. Think of
research as looking for lost treasure.
This is a person’s best friend. Make lots of copies so that you can
make sure have the facts straight and make sure to label where you got
it for future reference. Nothing is more frustrating than trying to
remember where you found an obscure fact. So save yourself a lot of
heartache and become good friends with a Xerox machine.
Remember research is fun. Imagine finding some obscure fact like how
many times in a day does a whale surface or about some little know
historical hero. All this information gets the mind stimulated and
open new avenues of thought for your novel.
Talk. The greatest ideas are born from conversations I’ve had. I like to
stimulate conversation so I ask question that can get a debate going.
What is your ideal image of you soulmate? Would your soulmate be
perfect? Example would she or he not force you to talk about what you
are feeling? Would you try to change a person to fit your own ideal of
perfect? These question will create so much different response
you would be surprised.
There are so many resources available to you out there and the
information super highway is a great source. There are so many things
to surf and see. If you do a search on the word romance you would be
amazed at the amount of sites with information on this. There are
ideas for recipes, gifts, people, place and so many thins. The
Internet brings this all to you in lightning speed. Try these other
words to search: love, romance, couple, soul mate, novel, writer and
any word you can think of that I may have missed.
Opinions. The opinions of others are
good things to have. Become part of a writers organization this is a
strong resource for information. I have found that the individuals
that I have met are very helpful and have so many opinions to share
that enhance my own thought. The organization that I find very helpful
are Romance Writers of America, From the Heart Chapter and Word
Museum. I have others listed on my links page you
No right or
wrong way. The final rule of research is the golden one." There is no
right or wrong way to research." Repeat this a couple of times in your
head and then aloud. Remember where you found the information and who
ever you get it from doesn’t matter. All that matters is finding the
There are many
place or people you can contact to help you in your search for
information to make your novel accurate. I have a few organizations
that are wonderful resources for writers in my links page. Research is
a tool that doesn’t have to put you to sleep or make you grind your
teeth. Just remember relaxation is the key.