While some people like to spend time digging deeper and deeper—and deeper still—into a topic, there’s a good chance you, like many other people, don’t always find research riveting. When you’re blogging a book, however, you’ll notice that research is indispensable: it makes your writing come alive with well-sourced arguments in your favor (non-fiction) or grounds your story on solid footing (fiction).
Either way, you’re going to have to do research at some point. You might as well make it fun.
Here are five key ways to do just that.
1. Use the Right Tools
Here’s one of the reasons your research isn’t fun: you’re doing it the old-fashioned way. Manual labor. But there are tools out there that can sort out a lot of the menial tasks for you—tools, like Coggle, that make it much easier to interact with complicated information. And use a service like Wunderlist to keep tabs on everything you’ve done so far—it will at least ensure that once you’ve dug up a source, you don’t lose it.
2. Ask More Interesting Questions
Call me crazy, but I think research is supposed to be fun. Why not? When you conduct research, you get to ask probing questions. Do you ever find yourself randomly asking Alexa or Google Home about some factoid? Then you find research fun, too—at least when you’re engaged with the questions. So ask more interesting questions. Don’t do the same research everyone else does. Start with a more interesting premise, and you may be excited to find any sources that address them.
3. Listen to Something While You Work
Listening to podcasts or music can throw you off somewhat while you write. But when it comes to research, you might not find it as intrusive. Whether you want to listen to a radio show, a podcast, an audiobook, or some inspiring music, that background sound can work well and keep you sufficiently entertained while you do some intensive research.
4. Make Your Research Interactive
Ever spend some time with a librarian trying to find just the right book? Or spend an intriguing conversation with a customer service representative on the phone as you try to get the right answers? Making research interactive and cooperative can be a great way to get the answers you need while rendering the process itself more engaging. Don’t go around asking everyone and anyone for help, but do take the time to ask how you might find the answers in a more interactive way. If you call the right number or email the right individual, you’d be surprised at how easy it can be.
5. Take a Break
As fun as research can sometimes be, any intensive mental task is going to eventually require a break. Don’t be afraid to take one. You might not only find yourself rejuvenated when you return to your work, but taking a break from research and analysis can give your mind time to work over a problem that’s been plaguing you.
There’s no definitive answer for “how to research.” But if you take the time to figure out which method makes research the most efficient and engaging for you, you’d be amazed at how many sources you can discover for your authoring and blogging efforts.
How do you make research fun? Tell me in a comment below.
About the Author
Dan Kenitz is a freelance writer and ghostwriter from Wisconsin who helps individuals and companies build their brands through valuable content. www.empirewriter.com
Image copyright:StockSnap / Pixabay.com