Questions tagged [research]

Questions about how to conduct research, and how to incorporate your research into your writing.

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149 views

I'm trying to write a blog about future tech and science - where can I find ideas?

I watch Isaac Arthur and John Michael Godier; I’m looking for a site to help me write an online blog, that talks about a future science tech or idea every week (or every month; depending on my ...
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106 views

How can I research non-recent 21st century cultural events?

I'm currently writing a story taking place in the recent past in which (aside from the main plot) my characters get to spend some time in a big city. They end up visiting the tourist joints but also ...
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51 views

In which sections of a research report is it appropriate to include citations?

I have been doing some research on citations and haven't been able to get a clear answer on this. When writing a project report, in which sections is it appropriate to include citations? In this ...
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Research Paper Summary: How much should be citations versus original thought?

I'm finalizing a single-paragraph summary of a multi-page research paper for school and I was concerned when I noticed that most of my summary was in my own words. I mean that most of what I wrote was ...
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4answers
77 views

How to write a non-fiction book? [closed]

I've heard that in order to write a non-fiction book I need to write notes and then put them together to make a book, but I'm writing notes from possible 4 completely different books, so when should I ...
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1answer
39 views

What types of resources and primary sources are helpful for getting into historical character?

When you are developing characters for fiction, and particularly historical fiction, what kinds of resources do you find most helpful in establishing a distinctive voice? Two suggestions I've heard ...
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66 views

Where to find primary sources for getting into historical character? (voicing)

What sites, libraries, or other organizations have strong, easy-to-browse collections of letters, diaries, and other primary sources that are great for authors doing research for historical fiction ...
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13answers
7k views

How to tell readers that I know my story is factually incorrect?

Sometimes, it so happens that I do some research for a story and find that a major plot point could never work in real life. At this stage, I can either continue with my impossible (for a non-fantasy, ...
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2answers
102 views

Exhaustive research vs artistic license?

I'm working on a post-apocalypse novel set all over the world. I'm fairly flexible on where some of the events take place, but there are often specific requirements on the look, layout, general region ...
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6answers
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How can I effectively research for a high-fantasy setting?

When you write in a modern day setting, you research the culture, climate, location and history of that setting. You can do the same for historical fiction or low-fantasy settings based on real places....
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Is it okay to majorly distort historical facts while writing a fiction story?

Suppose A is a famous historical character with a known history of emotional attachment with a particular set of people. If I would want to write a fictional story about character A that might involve ...
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91 views

How can one learn about the laws of hospitality in Latin America? [closed]

I have a situation where my MC - who has a dangerous reputation - was captured by an agent of Bolivian security. She takes him to her father in-law, who starts to torture him. He learns that much of ...
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How to document and cite website downtime properly?

I couldn't find anything on this one, so maybe someone has a good idea on what would be considered good practice in a scholarly context. Background For a semester project, I have to observe an ...
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345 views

Should I write a companion book/blog?

As a spinoff to this question: Incorporating research and background: How much is too much? I'm writing a middle-grade fantasy novel with a historical fiction component based in Ancient Egypt. I'm ...
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Incorporating research and background: How much is too much?

The amount of research I'm doing for my novel is staggering. To the point where my spouse says I need to write a companion book (or a blog) just talking about the research! Sometimes I research for ...
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5answers
206 views

Consulting experts - why should they talk to someone who isn't a published writer yet?

Whatever subject I am researching for my story, the common recommendation is "talk to the relevant professionals". If I need medical information, talk to a doctor. If I need information about the ...
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4answers
149 views

Finding out about other countries' military day-to-day

Where does one go to find out about the day-to-day of military life? In countries other than my own? I don't mean combat - I mean the boring routine. Basic training. What kind of food is served in the ...
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2answers
190 views

When writing in a school context without ever having been to school, how do I make sure that my story is accurate within school context?

I read a lot of YA fiction, a lot of which happens to take place in schools. Recently, an idea jumped into my head for a YA-ish story and told me that it was going to take place in a school. The idea ...
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3answers
80 views

Research on an alternate history novel

I love alternate history scenarios; however, I just want to start writing. Should I do research or just start writing and go with it with some research along the way?
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103 views

Fictionalizing firsthand accounts from history?

I am currently in the research phase of writing my first novel that is based on a true historical event. Having obtained a ton of sources in more than three different languages, I have come across ...
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1answer
57 views

Is there a good source of information for political intrigues? [closed]

Every time I watch a TV show from India or China, I am amazed about all the different subtle political intrigues that go on, so I would like to know if there's some kind of books that covers a lot of ...
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4answers
325 views

How to search for titles of novels that are or begin with a word or phrase previously used as the title of many nonfictional works?

Say I have a possible title for a novel I am writing, and it's a word or phrase that has been used in the title of quite a large number of nonfictional works, sometimes as the whole of the title. But ...
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7answers
4k views

Character is an expert on something I'm not

My OC Edward, who I thought of quite a while ago but haven't done anything with, is a professional cyber spy and hacker. He's employed by an organization (in the future, of course) that is basically ...
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2answers
112 views

Scrivener for windows, adding a website with special characters to research?

I think I'm asking this correctly, but I'm trying to add a website to my research https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/K%C3%A1rm%C3%A1n_line (the ACTUAL website is https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kármán_line ,...
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4answers
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Interviewing a person for a character

So I'm building a character who works in a particular field of science and I found an e-mail for a scientist on the internet and emailed him. I described how I'm writing a sci-fi story and gave him ...
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4answers
473 views

How to research sex for writing?

I'm not writing erotica - I'm writing fantasy and sci-fi. But sometimes my characters make love, sometimes in ways I cannot be familiar with. In one story, it's two guys (I'm a girl). In another story,...
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5answers
780 views

Does dialogue need to be accurate to the setting?

I am currently writing a story that is set in pre-WWI USA/America. I do not mind conducting research about the locations and the time. I do want to understand what experiences my characters will have ...
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5answers
4k views

How does a writer go about consulting experts?

I'm writing a story that has a medical condition as a central plot point, and now I have questions to ask a doctor. The problem is, I don't know one. I could make up the details, but I feel like the ...
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4answers
122 views

Would a research team of this size be too small or too big? [closed]

I'm working on a story that revolves around a research team in a remote setting. They would have supplies so they don't have to leave the area they have to research for about a year. So far, I am ...
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1answer
207 views

Are there any stories with awkward first-time sex scenes between adults? [closed]

I know first-time sex scenes between adults do exist in the literature, but are there any stories with awkward first-time moments? By "adults", I am referring to the mid-to-late 20s or early 30s age ...
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3answers
166 views

How do relationships build the main character or plot

I read that it’s approved of to have the protagonist to have deep relationships which I mean as friend-related bonds between people - because it makes the character stand out I’m asking this based on ...
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1answer
51 views

Should I explain the consequences of the contributions in the contribution section?

Should I explain the consequences of the contributions in the contribution section of a research paper? For instance, what is the best option between these two (if any)? In this paper, we provide ...
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2answers
111 views

Researching a hospital setting

I want to use a hospital (specifically, Walter Reed in Bethesda) as a setting. How best do authors research the daily routine? Is there someone I can reach out to such as a public relations person or ...
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1answer
246 views

Researching an Apology Email

I’m writing a comedy story that shows my two characters moving to the brink of tragedy and then, ultimately, to reconciliation. The tale is based on a series of emails between a football mad guy and ...
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3answers
1k views

Researching Future Technology for a Science Fiction Novel

Because I enjoy reading Science Fiction, I'm thinking of writing a Sci-Fi novel myself. I'm interested in 'hard' (related to the engineering sciences) science fiction with a military bent (think The ...
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9answers
8k views

Writing a character who is an expert in something that I can't know

I'm writing a story where the main character comes back from the dead. The character is fully lucid, knowledgeable and articulate about what has happened. I want to depict the character as an expert, ...
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8answers
367 views

Is it important to research the topic of your novel/story before writing it?

Let's say you're writing a story about magic. Does it have to be based on real facts and real magic or can you just make up everything and it doesn't have to be based on real facts?
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2k views

How do you verify information?

This is a problem I usually come across with my stories. I often worry about whether the plotlines I introduce are realistic or not, and it's usually something that can't be solved with a simple ...
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2answers
117 views

Confusion about usage of present tense vs past tense vs mixed

I am quite new to writing so I hope my question makes any sense. I'm trying to write a first draft of a story that has been haunting me for quite a while. Even though I'm fine with it to fail, I ...
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2answers
182 views

Besides books, what other sources can be used to gain knowledge? [closed]

What other ways are there to acquire knowledge? Will the Internet be helpful?
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1answer
137 views

Where can I find examples of the formatting/terminolgy/slang used in describing snowboarding routines in a competition scene?

I'm struggling to write an accurate description of a Snowboarding Competition, since I don't know where to access written accounts on the technique used as well as the correct terminology. I am busy ...
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0answers
69 views

I am writing about examples of contemporary stereotyping of Native Americans, but what are more contemporary examples in movies and shows? [closed]

I am currently researching how stereotypes of Native Americans are still propagated in films today in the 21st century, just as they are in things like sports mascots and food brands, but I am having ...
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1answer
57 views

How do I express that others and I were unable to find literature about a topic?

Given this question of mine I wondered: If one wants to publish a new result which one couldn't find any information where the result could have possibly been covered (and neither could one's ...
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4answers
126 views

What is the difference between “accurate” information in a document and “believable” information?

As part of some research I am doing on measuring documentation quality, I have come across the terms "accurate" and "believable" as two separate dimensions of information quality. But the differences ...
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2answers
119 views

I'm writing a thesis/novel. What should I pay attention to on a possible research trip?

For my BA degree, I am required to complete a thesis project in the field of fiction writing, and I plan to write a novel. With the idea I'm pursuing right now, I plan for it to have elements of ...
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3answers
539 views

Where to find examples of real life situations and counter-arguments to support your arguments in an essay?

I'm currently writing an essay for a school assignment. My teacher's—and Google's—answers as to where to find examples of real life situations and counter-arguments to support my arguments in an essay ...
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8answers
232 views

To read or not to read similar works before write my own?

I was thinking if is better or worst to read other works that share similar ideas to the story you want to write before you start it or while doing it. Two quick answers comes to my mind: Yes, do ...
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3answers
207 views

How can I know that what's on a site is true?

So from my other question, I was told that under certain circumstances, you could trust Wikipedia. But then after a couple of answers, I started wondering how to figure out which sites have valid ...
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17answers
13k views

Is Wikipedia Trustworthy?

So in elementary school, I was told not to use Wikipedia too much because you can't trust what they write. So then for all the projects, I used the Canadian Encyclopedia, but then now, I really would ...
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1answer
102 views

Where to find industrial schematics or blue prints for reference?

I am researching the weapons and systems that exist in the present day to better understand and extrapolate the jargon that my characters will be using. I have found many interesting pieces of ...