Saturday, September 29, 2012

Go Research That

I recently visited the International Crane Foundation in Baraboo, Wisconsin. I went for fun because it's a really cool place but also to do some research for my book.
 Grey Crowned Crane
Whooping Crane
Seeing these birds up close is always inspiring, whether you're writing a book about them or not. It takes me a long time to write a book, so I'm always looking for ways to keep going. Doing your research is something that will spur you on.
I've learned a lot about birds, but I can always learn more. Much more. And even though I'm writing fiction, I need to have my facts straight. Getting the facts down will bring depth and authenticity to my story. This is true for anything you're writing about. The character's passion has to be the writer's passion. A writer must know everything a character knows; it's even better if the writer knows more. It's really easy to spot if a writer doesn't know what she's talking about, and it can pull you out of the story. (I was just reading a novel in which a character describes roasting a chicken, and it was obvious that the writer had never actually roasted a chicken. So I started thinking about roasting chickens instead of thinking about the story I was reading.) If a writer doesn't know what she's talking about, it shows. The small details are so important. Research allows the writer to arm herself with those small details that make readers truly buy in to the story.

No comments: