Doing effective research on the Internet
There is very little information on doing effective research on the Internet for writers. And yet almost any information you need to research and write any script, develop any character, create up any situation, develop any setting, if you know where to look. If you only use Google as everyone else does, you’re only scratching the surface. You wouldn’t believe how much more there is to find.
When I started using the Internet for searches to help my writing, I realised that it isn’t quite as easy as people say.
Yes, there are search engines, but they didn’t always give me the information I wanted. Writers generally have more complex and subtle queries when they’re doing their research, sometimes you want an obscure line of dialogue, a reference or even a real person on the other end to share their experience.
But when you know how to look there is amazing information you can find on the internet which can help writers research in all kinds of unexpected ways.
For example, directories work entirely differently from search engines, allowing you to drill down into information as you might in a library. Google can work as a directory, and there are dedicated directories too. News groups (now joined with google groups, but actually much more sophisticated and popular) give you a completely different way of covering a research area and, if you want, allowing you to contact individuals or groups of experts in every area from science to transgender.
I discovered there was far, far more to the Net than Google can ever show you. What I found, I put into the Internet Search FAQ – check it out here.