Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Do You Research or Just Write It?

I spend a lot of time at the local library. A couple of weeks ago, my friend, the librarian, asked me, "Do you do research for your books?"

The question caused me to stop for a moment, "Can't write a book without doing research."

We got into a discussion, since that had been a topic brought up by some other librarians.

Even when I did my memoir-mockumentary (there's a new word for you), "Going Dutch, Trials of a Wage Slave" I did research. I checked on quotes, regulations, business topics and liability. Getting sued is no fun.

The novel I just completed took me almost 5 years to write. It's on a complex topic, cyberwar, and there aren't too many references out there. The subject is so leading edge, most people can't comprehend the topic.

It led to me creating a 4 drawer file cabinet full of background information. This doesn't include the movies, videos, library books, Internet, blogs, etc. that I reviewed to gain an understanding of my subject.

The worst thing a writer can do is put out a book that doesn't have all the latest info on the subject. Sure, it might be wrong in the future, when the technology advances or society overtakes the concept.

But for right now, it better be as good as you can make it.

Faking it will get you burned, every time.

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