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It's All About the Research...Or Is It?

Updated: Jun 13, 2023

Have you ever marveled at how novels have the power to make you feel as though you are living the characters' experiences? Or you've caught yourself giving people a skeptical glance because your favorite book character does it better?

Wednesday's Blog discussed the role characters play in developing your unforgettable novel.

Here are some steps to help you in your research:

  1. Define your novel's setting: Decide on the specific urban location where your story will take place. Research the city or neighborhood extensively to understand its demographics, culture, history, landmarks, and any unique aspects that might influence your narrative.

  2. Read Urban Fiction novels: Familiarize yourself with the genre by reading popular Urban Fiction books. Reading books in your chosen genre will give you a sense of the style, themes, and tropes common in Urban Fiction, allowing you to identify what sets your story apart.

  3. Explore real-life experiences: Engage with the real-life experiences of individuals living in urban environments. You can achieve this by reading memoirs, personal accounts, interviews, and articles that discuss life in urban areas. Consider seeking out diverse perspectives to gain a more comprehensive understanding.

  4. Visit the location: Immerse yourself in the atmosphere, and observe the people, architecture, and local customs. Explore the different neighborhoods, visit local establishments, and participate in events to gather firsthand experiences.

  5. Online resources: Utilize various online resources to gather information. Websites, blogs, and forums related to urban culture, lifestyle, and city-specific information can provide valuable insights. Look for reputable sources that offer reliable and up-to-date information.

  6. Interviews and conversations: Reach out to individuals who have firsthand experience living in urban environments, such as residents, community organizers, activists, or local historians. Conduct interviews or informal conversations to gather their perspectives, insights, and personal stories. Picking other views can add authenticity and depth to your novel.

  7. Documentaries and films: Watch documentaries and movies that focus on urban life or explore specific urban issues. These visual mediums can provide visual cues, evoke emotions, and help you better understand the urban environment you're writing about.

  8. Research urban issues: Urban environments often face unique challenges and issues such as poverty, crime, gentrification, inequality, or social movements. Investigate these topics to incorporate realistic elements and portray them accurately in your novel.

  9. Social media and online communities: Engage with social media platforms and online communities that discuss Urban Fiction, urban culture, or city-specific topics. Connect with like-minded writers, readers, and experts who can share insights, recommend resources, or provide feedback on your work.

  10. Balance research with creativity: While research is essential, remember that you are writing fiction. Use your research as a foundation and allow your imagination to guide the story. Strike a balance between authenticity and creative storytelling.

Remember to keep detailed notes throughout your research process, organizing them to suit your writing style. By implementing these habits into your routine, creating a whole new world for a reader to explore will be creatively smooth.

Until next time, please share our blog with your friends, visit the URBAN AINT DEAD store, drop us a line, and remember no one can want your success more than you.

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