I’ve Been Searching

internet22.pngI’ve mentioned elsewhere that the Internet has bolstered my creative writing. I love that I can find simple things quickly–the name of a street, a line from a song, a recipe for a drink. I have always loved dictionaries, almanacs, encyclopedias, and maps; use it well, I tell my students, and the Internet gives you many of the secondary sources you need.

As I write, my mind goes to ideas, or details I need to know, and I want to hunt those details or concepts down. A character is afflicted with an illness, and I want to know how they might be feeling, what challenges they face, and what their prognosis might me. I send a character down a street to pick up a passenger in his limo, and I want to know what that street looks like. I used Google Street View recently to look at a street scene to help me describe what my character would see when he looked out the window of a certain Irish pub in Manhattan.

Over the last few weeks, I have been working on four different stories, finishing one, and putting two on a back burner while one might head to the finish line. I went through my Google search history. Among many mundane searches (directions, work-related searches), I was delighted to find a long list of searches related to the stories:

  • Do hangovers kill brain cells?
  • Wretch
  • Retching
  • Bar stool designs
  • Worst kind of bipolar disorder
  • Wild Turkey 101
  • Chinese 8-Ball Pool
  • Ski skiing skied
  • Italian word for boy
  • The tulip bubble
  • Shades of purple
  • Belly shirt
  • Sussuration
  • Agape Greek love
  • Alderian therapy
  • Self-disclousre in therapy
  • What would a doctor do to help a patient die
  • Synonyms for sacred
  • Medical term for senility
  • Medical term for as needed
  • Refinery jobs
  • Population of Antarctica
  • Forest fires
  • Common Mexican girl names 2003

If I were even a half-way decent poet, I would have a good start on something here. Oh, and if you have never heard of the tulip bubble, you really owe it to yourself to read about it–on the internet, at least to start there.

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