This 3rd installment of Friday Links for Writers: Quirky Research Sources for Writers gives nod to the #Youknowyou’reawriter truism of worrying what the FBI might think of your random online search history.
Best ways to hold a battle ax. How long does it take to bury a body. You know, as one does.
Even without the excuse of writing thrillers or horror, I confess an undue number of searches related to weaponry, terrorism, reporting from conflict zones, specific jails, specific dangers. Particularly researching for Never Said. I’ve read and watched some shocking things. (It took awhile to get over the morgue tour — our ME is big on gravedigger humor and indelible images.)
Although, equally, my searches include finding unedited dashcam footage of TT motorcycle road races from twenty years back (in awe: pre-GoPro). And sweet things like sound of the native birds on a particular hillside, or finding a picture of the inside of a small village church. (Pinterest board for Never Said)
This week’s Friday Links for Writers shares the odd articles writers come across in weekly reading — a cross section of authentic info for everything from the gruesome to the sacred, the timely to the de ciecle.
Have a great writing week, all.
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A long read in The Atlantic. Some things you just can’t imagine accurately without hearing from the pros.
A touching exploration on what occurs when one dies alone – but also unusual insight, tracing the various vendors and entities that go into resolving unidentified estates, or even just the path a body travels.
This article is just one post in Benjamin Sobieck’s Writer’s Guide to Weapons.
This won’t get you all 007 about how to speak 20 languages with ease or kill a foe with dental floss… but certainly is a twist on your average “how to edit your prose” advice.
Thanks to Diana Terrill Clark, a writer in my circle, who shared this website with patterns for clothing and undergarments from historical periods. A good visual when describing historic apparel.
An infographic and map-imbedded article breaking down the layers of conflict, useful to anyone writing about impacts of the war in Syria in the 4 years leading to October 2015 publication.
The map that got me was the second, which shows the predominant national ancestry for each county in the United States.
Here’s where we start to see what a map addict I am. Dory Klein of the Boston Public Library is amazing in revealing the layered stories behind sea monsters at the fringes of early maps.
This Open Culture piece shares link to an award-winning animation: “Six students from De Montfort University have created a stellar 3D representation of 17th century London, as it existed before The Great Fire of 1666.”
Whether you grew up in churches or not, knowing the proper terminology for narthex and apse can be outside one’s grasp. Along comes this handy glossary from Ken Collins.
Wikipedia offers this glossary, which provides an extensive list of definitions for terms related to Islam and Arab traditions. Want another great introduction to Muslim traditions? Check out the American Muslim Teenager’s Handbook, written by an American Muslim mother and her teens, with instructional insights intended to increase understanding for those inside and outside the faith.
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What Are You Working On?
Chime in to share your current research challenge or favorite source in the comments below. My own challenges have included finding recordings of specific dialects, down to a county, or the sound of a particular engine during a race. Lately, I was searching to figure what alternative rock would have been playing in Dublin ten and fifteen years back. Often, it’s getting details of a specific process (taxidermy, for an unfinished story). What are yours? Share links, a challenge, or your best research strategy.
Don’t forget: I’ll be on Twitter with Wordsmith Studio all day today (Friday, April 15th) to host hourly writing sprints. Find me @elissafield, follow hashtag #wssprint or read more in yesterday’s post.
— Wordsmith Studio (@WordsmithStudio) April 9, 2016
— Elissa Field (@elissafield) April 14, 2016
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For more Friday Links for Writers:
- Friday Links for Writers 07.03.15
- Scan summaries of the links shared on all Friday Links posts: hover over individual post-titles listed on the Links & Where to Find Me page
- Press Freedom for Journalists Covering Conflict: Free Austin Tice — speak out using #FreeAustinTice
- Finishing the Novel: Daily Task of Getting it Done
- Writing in Process: Using Alternative Voice to Understand Conflict