Saturday, April 12, 2014

How Much Is Too Much?

I looked up yesterday and an hour and a half had flown past. I hadn’t written a word. In fact, I had copied a ton of words and pictures from here and there, anywhere I could find them.

Research. Why does it take such a lot of time?

I’m writing a short story (not even a novel) that I want to get right. I have permission to submit it to an anthology that I would LOVE to be in. It’s one of the Akashic Noir anthos. Most of them take place in particular city, with each story touching on a different part of the city. I was assigned a very well-known building, one that millions of people have toured. But I’ve never been there. Would that I could get there before the deadline! But I can’t. So I’ve gotten some info from a couple of people and am filling in with online videos and comments.

I think what I want to happen will work. The first floor of the building is open to the public, but the second floor is off limits. I want my murder to happen upstairs, so I think I’m free to make up what it looks like, since no one ever sees it, right? I hope I’m right.

As usual in research, a teensy portion of what I’ve researched will end up in the story. I do like to get the details correct, though. To say that the building is blue when it’s actually white (or something like that) will totally stop the reader who has been there. And will probably prompt irate emails. That’s IF I get into the anthology.

It’s like the picture that went around on Facebook the other day: I can’t believe I work this hard to be this poor.

I find that I do almost as much research for an average short story as for an average novel, proportionally. Or maybe, proportionally, page for page, I do more for a short. Crazy.

1 comment:

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

That's why I write about a fictional city but in an area I know really well.