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HAPPY BIRTHDAY, LIBERTÀ!
Here at Libertà, we’re about to celebrate our first birthday! Strictly speaking, it’s on 7th December but we did open the website in November 2015 so we’re spending a few weeks researching for our celebration, in the run-up to
The Big Day.
Helped by a host of our writing friends.
Researching just means dusty old books, doesn’t it?
Nope. Our friends will be telling us about researching in a fun way.
Because their research is fun.
Researching for crime, for fantasy, for all sorts of topics and all sorts of periods. Think of Downton Abbey for example — how do you make sure the background is right, from the food, to the uniforms, to the manners?
How, as a writer, do you research Regency England if you live 12,000 miles away?
How do you find out what it’s really like to be in a police car chase? With guns?
All that and more, from bestselling authors who really cut it with their readers but each in their different ways.
A Celebration of Researching — with a Difference.
Not daydreaming — researching . . .
Have you ever noticed a writer gazing into space? She probably has a rapt — and faraway — look on her face. She’s in a world of her own, a world she may be in the process of creating.
But, equally, she may be doing research.
She appears to be staring into nothing, But she’s remembering sitting on the bus, where she was eavesdropping on the couple in front, wondering why their conversation was the way it was. And what the background was. She took mental notes, and now she’s working out a plot around that conversation, because above all else, the characters in her story have to sound real to the reader.
Researching by doing . . .
Or maybe our researching writer is involved in a re-enactment of medieval life or of a famous battle. That can be huge fun as well as enlightening for the author. If you’re not convinced, have a look at Sarah Mallory’s blog on the re-enactment of the Battle of Waterloo. And admire her Band, here.
Who could resist “a whole camp full of soldiers”? Lydia Bennet certainly couldn’t!
Some have to know what’s going to happen, or at least a convincing explanation of what might happen if they want to create a future world. Even in fantasy, you can’t write about dragons, or vampires, or zombies, unless you know how they’re supposed to operate. Researching downright scary stuff is also research.
Our first blog in the series isn’t about The Undead.
As it happens, though, it is partly about The Dead.
Plus some side lights on the twisty thought processes that get writers through the daunting business of Making The Plot Believable.
Don’t miss it.
Published next Sunday, 6th November.