A to Z Challenge 2013

Monday, April 8, 2013


One thing I'm thankful for is Google;  I cannot imagine being a writer without it.  Whether you need to search through names to find that perfect choice or research facts for your story, Google is a necessity.  And I can't imagine how hard it was before Google to do any of these things.

Just to be fair, research in person can be invaluable.  I actually took a trip up to the University of Northern Colorado a while back to talk to a scientist specializing in genetics.  But prior to going on the journey, I used Google to research genetics in general so I would at least know the basics.   And while I'm no expert, I would never have been able to learn all that I did (for free no less) without a great deal more work.  Or I would have looked like a complete noob to the scientist, who was nice enough to give me a bit of her time.

Research is a mandatory part of writing.  Even if you're creating a completely fictional world with nothing even slightly similar to reality, it's unlikely that any of us knows everything we need to.  Before Google, that might have meant calling around (or worse, driving around) and finding the right person to help you out.  Nowadays you can find the right person or the right information with just a few mouse clicks and keystrokes.

When was the last time you did research for a project?  Did you use Google to get it done?


susan said...

I agree that Google is a necessary part of a writer's life. I use Google every day at least several times.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Eric .. sadly I agree without Google and Wikipedia I'd be lost and hopeless at blogging .. on the other hand I use British tv and articles I find ...

I did 4 posts recently on IceHouseEarth .. where they traced the DNA of someone in the UK back to Africa and then brought both branches forward (mother's and father's line) to today - I enjoyed posting those articles .. lots there - but it really opened my eyes as to how much science is opening our world up for us ..

Your talk with the scientist must have been interesting .. cheers Hilary

Joseph said...


One of the best features of Google is Google Maps. Did you know that you can take a virtual drive on the US Interstates? I used the feature extensively for my first novel and in the progress of my second one.

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Eric said...

Joseph - I actually did know about that and should have mentioned it. I actually used that feature for a paper while working for my Masters.