Writers do a lot of research, both for specific projects and in general. We all have different topics of interest, but finding great resources is something we excel at. The resources listed below are definitely not going to be everyone's cup of tea, but they are a few resources I go back to again and again. I hope you find some of them useful!
If you’ve read my blog before, you know I love talking about setting, places, and psychogeography. So, it should come as no surprise that one of my favorite research resources is Atlas Obscura. If you aren’t familiar, the website is a directory of all kinds of strange and wonderful places from around the world. You want to know about Poveglia, the Italian lazaretto that is home to thousands of human remains and an abandoned insane asylum? That’s covered. What about the underground crypts of Paris? No problem. Maybe you just want to know more about a historical site like Strawberry Hill? You can find that too. I often wind up falling down a rabbit hole of strange places on this site, but it is so great for researching settings or getting story ideas.
First, I want to warn everyone that this is not a blog for the squeamish! That said, if you have any interest in medical history, death, or burial, give this blog a look. Run by Dr. Lindsay Fitzharris, it is a great resource for all things a bit medical and a bit gruesome. Want to read a post on Civil War embalming or Victorian body snatchers? Give this blog a try.
First, I must credit my discovery of this resource to the podcast My Favorite Murder, which I adore. That said, Murderpedia is a great resource for anyone writing about crime. It is a wiki full of information about murderers, from individual murders of note to serial killers like Ted Bundy. If you write crime novels, give this one a look.
I feel like I sound like a broken record, but I adore podcasts. If you aren’t listening to podcasts, you should seriously give them a try. There are podcasts on just about every subject imaginable, but I’ve recommended quite a few on this blog too. I listen to podcasts on Old Hollywood, true crime, folklore, and more. Just start listening and you are bound to find something you enjoy.
If you aren’t familiar, Paul Cooper is a writer and PhD candidate who has one of my favorite Twitter accounts ever. He posts awesome threads about ruins, abandoned places, and historical sites as well as art and photography related to these kinds of places. If you have any interest in history, architecture, art history, or archaeology, check out his account. You can also find some of his work on The Atlantic.