Write Publish understands that you've got your story idea and are excited to start writing. But hold your horses! Before you dive into the world of your imagination, there's an essential step you need to take: Research. Whether you're writing a historical drama or a futuristic sci-fi, research is the cornerstone that will make your story authentic and relatable. In this comprehensive guide, we'll walk you through the step-by-step process of researching your book, highlighting the differences between fiction and non-fiction.
Why Research is Important
Research adds depth and credibility to your story. It helps you avoid glaring errors and inconsistencies that could distract your reader from the narrative. For non-fiction, research is the backbone of your content, providing the facts, statistics, and evidence that support your thesis.
Step-by-Step Guide to Research
Step 1: Identify What You Need to Know
Fiction: List elements like setting, time period, character occupations, etc., that you need to understand better.
Non-Fiction: Identify the key points, arguments, or themes you'll discuss. Know what evidence you need to gather.
Step 2: Choose Your Sources
Fiction: Books, articles, documentaries, and interviews can be excellent sources.
Non-Fiction: Academic journals, credible websites, expert interviews, and case studies are usually more appropriate.
Step 3: Take Notes
Both: Keep a dedicated notebook or digital document where you jot down important facts, ideas, or questions that arise during your research.
Step 4: Verify Information
Non-Fiction: This is crucial. Always cross-reference facts from multiple sources.
Fiction: While not as stringent, ensuring that your details are accurate can add authenticity.
Step 5: Organize Your Research
Both: Create an outline or a mind map to organize the information you've gathered.
Step 6: Consult Experts
Fiction: If your story involves specialized knowledge, don't hesitate to consult experts.
Non-Fiction: Interviews with experts can provide valuable insights and add credibility to your work.
Step 7: Immerse Yourself
Fiction: Sometimes, visiting a location or experiencing an activity can provide insights that pure academic research can't.
Non-Fiction: Immersion can provide a first-hand understanding of your subject matter.
Research is not just a preliminary step but a continuous process that goes hand-in-hand with your writing. It enriches your narrative, adds layers to your characters, and, most importantly, makes your story believable.