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March 16, 2016

G – Google as a Writing Tool





No, Google is not a writing mentor.

No, Google is not Stephen King.

No, Google is not a best-seller How-to book.

But…Google has an infinite supply of knowledge (thanks to blogs and websites) and much of it from professionals in their subjects

I use Google all the time when I need info fast. For the things I need to extensively research I use both books and Google. But Internet research is still my first option as long as I double check all resources to make sure they are accurate.


I’ve shared a list of my Internet searches before but this is the complete list for the Disaster Crimes series (so far):

SEISMIC CRIMES:
1. California
2. San Francisco
3. Earthquakes
4. Self-defense moves
5. Monster truck driving
6. How to do doughnuts
7. China Town
8. China Town Gate
9. Kung Chow Temple
10. Dim Sum
11. Golden Gate Park
12. Cable Cars
13. Chanel No5
14. Eggs Benedict
15. High Striker game

BOOK 3:
1. Hawaii/Oahu
2. Places to get married in Orlando
3. Kraft Azalea Gardens
4. Surfing
5. Surf terms
6. Diamond Head
7. USS Arizona Memorial
8. Ala Moana Mall
9. Shoulder gunshot wound
10. American Red Cross


QUESTION: What are you Googled for (writing) research?


56 comments:

Nicola said...

I tend to use Mr. Google because I know not of anyone else so knowledgeable and he tends to always answer :) Mind you I did get a bit nervous when I was researching bombs and the mafia - expecting a knock at my front door any minute - eeek! Have a great week, Chrys.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I use it all the time. Used it a lot for my last book. And discovered more about sea kelp than I ever needed to know...

S.A. Larsenッ said...

Yeah, I use Google all the time; maybe too much at times. ;) I'm a research freak. Love learning new and unexpected facts. I actually read a post yesterday about new ways to use Google docs, too.

Roland Clarke said...

Use Google as my starting point, but I tend to follow it up with other research to give another perspective. Google is not always 100% accurate, but it's often as close as I need to get.

Deniz Bevan said...

Eggs Benedict! I love seeeing other writers' research lists. I like Google for the maps, too, and love finding digital versions of historical maps!

betty said...

I use Google for research for work. In the "old" days you would have to have reference books for basically all the medical specialties and then several good medicine books. Now a less than 10 second Google search and I can usually find what I'm looking for. Love it.

betty

Pat Hatt said...

I use it for research here and there and to make sure I have the spelling of a word right sometimes.

Jeffrey Scott said...

In one of my stories, a character moves to Walla Walla Washingotn. So I had to use Google to research Walla Walla, Whitman College and the Walla Walla Regional Airport.
I don't know about anyone else, but I absolutely love doing research for whatever it is I'm writing. I'm hoping in May to get back to my writing full time.

Elizabeth Seckman said...

I google stuff all day long.

Lisa Thomson said...

How to treat a broken jaw. I'll be including that one in your edits, Chrys. Google is certainly a world of knowledge. I love your searches as they are so happy and of beautiful places.

Liz A. said...

Google's great in a classroom. Some random discussion will turn up a strange question, and I'll feel compelled to find the answer. If only to end the dispute.

Chrys Fey said...

HAHA!!! Yes, I always get nervous thinking about my search history. :P

Chrys Fey said...

HAHA! That's funny.

Chrys Fey said...

Google can be addicting. I'm always saying "We have to Google that." :P

Chrys Fey said...

Google as a starting point is a good idea. Yes, I know it's not always correct...you have to make sure the websites are accurate. Follow-up research is a must.

Chrys Fey said...

Digital versions of historical maps? I need to look for those!

Chrys Fey said...

Oh the good old days. LOL

Chrys Fey said...

Ha! Using it as a spellcheck is the best.

Chrys Fey said...

I love to do research for my stories too! It's fun and inspiring because I love to learn about new things. :)

Chrys Fey said...

So do I! ;)

Murees Dupè said...

When I'm lazy I check spelling of certain words, or I look for writing technique help.

Chrys Fey said...

A broken jaw? Let me just say...OUCH!

You should see my searched for another series...dark, dark, dark. lol

Chrys Fey said...

Google is great at ending disputes.

Chrys Fey said...

I do that too! HAHA

diedre Knight said...

Most recently I've looked up big ears (as in little pitchers) and the Boogeyman of New Orleans. Anyone tracking me probably thinks I have schizophrenia.
But I love google for research and use it more than any other.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

The last book in my series has a character who is a college basketball coach. I know very little about basketball anyway, so I did a bit of Googling to help me. (Plus I got to exchange emails with the then-coach of the Lady Clemson Tigers, and that really helped!)

Denise Covey said...

One of my unfinished novels is a police drama set on Nantucket Island. I haven't been to Nantucket yet, but was able to take a virtual trip through the town and the police station via our Google research partner. And when I'm writing anything and need a quick answer which will do for the moment and can be checked later--for example, working on my second paranormal romance yesterday I needed info on wine making in Tuscany. Google was there to help. What a world!

Yolanda Renée said...

It's a great resource and google earth is vital. Love the birds eye view for accuracy. And you can't deny that reading the FBI files aren't fun and helpful.

Chrys Fey said...

Haha! I've made some very questionable searches too.

Chrys Fey said...

How luck you could talk to the coach of the Lady Clemson Tigers!

Chrys Fey said...

I bet the wine-making was interesting to learn about.

Chrys Fey said...

Yup, I used Google Earth to help me know about places and streets in Oahu, Hawaii.

Lisa Thomson said...

No doubt you have some dark searches. Your face book ads must be interesting. I find after I google something specific ads will pop up on facebook in my feed. It's kind of creepy. :)

Chrys Fey said...

I've noticed that too. A lot of my ads are embarrassing. LOL

Lidy said...

I've Googled what it takes to be a F1 racer and a fireman academy for two of my latest story ideas.

J.H. Moncrieff said...

I can't imagine writing without Google now. My most recent searches were for Austrian last names that begin with W, and I'll soon be searching for hunting rifles and crossbows, as I don't know anything about them and I'm writing a story about hunters.

Have you seen the "If Google was a Guy" videos on YouTube? I highly recommend them. They're very funny.

Anonymous said...

Google is my go-to website. I do mostly online research and it's my favorite search engine.

Beverly Stowe McClure said...

I use Google a lot, for spelling, definitions of words, information about a subject, and just about everything. It's easier than dragging out books and looking through them.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Chrys - I use Wikipedia for research .. and if I need to broaden the subject - then I start Googling .. and I use it in a general way ...

But the thing is to keep a cool head (i.e. realise all you read may not necessarily be accurate) and double check ...

I do go from usually a reference source - an exhibition, or newspaper or documentary type article and then start looking for other aspects ...

Cheers for now - Hilary

Stephanie said...

I use Google for everything. I guess most recently, I was researching ancient war tactics, to figure out logistics for one of my novels. But, yeah, pretty much everything is on Google.

Chrys Fey said...

Good searches.

Chrys Fey said...

I can't imagine it either. I'd never be able to write about these things I don't know otherwise.

I haven't seen those videos. I'll have to look for them. :)

Chrys Fey said...

It's my favorite search engine too.

Chrys Fey said...

I use it for everything too. ;)

Chrys Fey said...

There are times when I've used Wikipedia. Like when I needed to learn about wrestling moves.

Double checking is a must.

Chrys Fey said...

I really do think everything is on Google.

Anonymous said...

I've googled things from Victorian times and dress to what a brain looks like.

Chrys Fey said...

Victorian research would be fun. A brain...a dead one or live one? lol

Cherdo said...

Happy St. Patrick's Day! I've nominated you for a Music & Words Award over on the Flipside. Tag - you're it!

Chrys Fey said...

Happy St. Patrick'S Day! Thanks for the nomination! :D

Yanting Gueh said...

I use Google all the time, from checking out skincare tips, to writing-related research like dinosaurs, China etc. It has been tremendously helpful!

Christine Rains said...

Me too, me too! I use Google a lot. Lately I've researched 1940s mansions and different types of axes. Which sounds creepy... but wait! I'm a writer! :)

Chrys Fey said...

What you can look up on Google is infinite. :)

Chrys Fey said...

Ha! My searches for other stories can sound creepy too. ;)

Chemist Ken said...

Google is great for those details that I think I know, but for which I can't relax until I check them out.

Chrys Fey said...

I feel the same way. :)