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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Wednesday Spotlight: Amber Kallyn

The Hurdles of Research

I’ve been doing an immeasurable amount of research lately. Some on marketing and promotion, since in today’s world this pretty much falls to authors.I find myself enjoying some aspects of research, disliking and slogging through others, and finding more things to add to my “To Learn About” list.

Let me tell you, I don’t exactly like researching subjects I’m not interested in, but sometimes one does what they must.

But research can be fun.

Recently, I got an idea for a Steampunk Urban Fantasy. I love the Victorian Era so delving into research was interesting.


I found so much to learn about.

A week later, I had too much information. LOL.

And I figured something out.

Research can be daunting; the overwhelming availability of materials out there is immense. It’s important to know when to stop looking and start writing. Rewriting and editing is always available later.

By only researching the basics, you’ll gain the ‘flavor’ you need to begin the project. Once the story is written, you will be able to see the areas specifically you need to research more and include that information during the editing process.

So, I stopped researching and started writing. I have notes everywhere (RESEARCH: This and That). And that’s all right.

I’ll fix it during my edits.

But at least I’m back to the writing now, rather than in the swirling vortex of lovely information out there.

Readers - How much information do you like in historical stories you read?
Writers - How do you handle your research?


Cathy M said...

I read historical romances, so I appreciate some history of the times. But for me, there has to be a balance. Too much historical data can take away from the reason I pick the book, for the romance.

Amber Kallyn said...


I completely agree. I've read books before that were great... if I wanted a history lesson. And, truth be told, sometimes that's exactly what I'm looking for.

But if I pick up a romance, I want to read about two people falling in love, not history.

It's a hard line to find sometimes, though -- keeping enough worldbuilding and history -vs- too little :)

booklover0226 said...

I agree with both Amber and CathyM. There should be a balance but I want a romance, not a history text book.

Tracey D