I Walk the Line

Word count: 227                                                                                                      Reading time: 1 min.

Research is the backbone of writing. Its presence instils a story with authenticity and its absence breaks the magic spell.

When I need to work with even the smallest of details I go in search of Knowledge. It’s easy, isn’t it? Type a question into the search engine and no matter how rudimentary the wording, an answer appears. It’s as though a mind-reader sits waiting to satisfy my curiosity.

Then I’m off – down the rabbit hole as Lynn Crymble puts it. There are so many interesting things to learn! Who knew that Norway won the most medals (15) in the 1936 Olympic Games, or that Canada, France, and Hungary took the least (1 each)?

Is my life richer for knowing this? Or have I just been sidetracked to the land of Too Much Information? On a bad day I emerge from a research expedition to find that my small spark of inspiration lies palpitating on the floor and I am 500 words behind my daily goal. On a good day I find a nugget that lights the way of the narrative.

I always struggle with the balance between being an information aggregator and a content creator. Unrealistic characterizations of time, place or protagonists create lifeless fiction. On the other hand, anyone can google the 1936 Olympics.

What rabbit holes have you been down lately?