Thursday, July 28, 2011

Researching with Youtube

Researching is something that I both love and hate. I love to learn odd tidbits that I can weave into a story so the reader is learning about these odd tidbits right along with me, but I hate that researching takes time away from writing. Ah well, it's necessary to the process and strengthens the story in the long run.

I'm currently working on six manuscripts at the same time, no easy feat and something I've never really done before. Oh, I've had two going at the same time, but never six. Three of the six happen to be historical westerns, one of which is another sequel to Sarah's Brass Token.

For one of the other westerns, I wanted my hero to be a blacksmith, which of course required research. I kinda knew the basics -- get the metal hot to bend, but I needed to know more. So I look it up and I can't find any descriptions that are in depth enough for me.  I wanted specific names of tools, specific techniques and even typical projects he might be called upon to create.

Finally, I got the idea to look at Youtube, to see if maybe they had some how-tos on blacksmithing. Wow. They did. I watched four great videos and took lots of notes. I'm a visual learner anyway so this was perfect. From now on, I plan to use Youtube in addition to other research venues.


Anonymous said...

I use the youtube a lot for my SF stories. Helps explore the direction science and technology is moving.

Michael Davis (
Author of the Year, (2008 and 2009)

Linda Kage said...

I never een thought of using YouTube for research. Thanks for the great advice.

Good luck on the blacksmithing scenes!

Julie Eberhart Painter said...

This is a great idea that I never would have considered. Thanks for the heads up, or hoof in the door.