Monday, February 20, 2017

How Good Of A Researcher Are You Really?

Writers need a number of skills to be successful, from great writing abilities and excellent editing capabilities to possessing a wonderful imagination and being strong book marketers.  But one overlooked area every writer needs to master is research skills.  The Craft of Research: 4th Edition can help in this area.

Writer magazine said of this book:

“For those writers in search of solid research to fuel their writing, this well-structured, accessible, and affordable book is a gem.”

I would agree with this assessment.

The book tackles every imaginable aspect about research, including these topics:
·         How to make an argument of fact.
·         How to check your sources and make sure they are reliable.
·         How to guard against inadvertent plagiarism.
·         Common citation styles.
·         Filtering information on the Internet.
·         What research really is.
·         How to question the information you are presented with.
·         Knowing when you need to revise your research.

But the most interesting I found was on ethics and research. The book, written by five authors, says:

“In short, when you report your research ethically, you join a community in a search for some common good.  When you respect sources, preserve and acknowledge data that run against your results, assert claims only as strongly as warranted, acknowledge the limits of your certainty, and meet all the other ethical obligations you have as a researcher and writer, you move beyond gaining a grade or other material goods – you earn the larger benefit that comes from creating a bond with your readers.  You discover that research focused on the best interests of others is also in your own.”

It lists these six no-no’s for today’s researcher-writer:

·         “Do not plagiarize or claim credit for the results of others."
·         “Do not misreport sources, invent data, or fake results."
·         “Do not submit data whose accuracy you don’t trust, unless you say so."
·         “Do not conceal objections that you cannot rebut."
·         “Do not caricature or distort opposing views."
·         “Do not destroy data or conceal sources important for those who follow.”

There are too many minefields to conducting research today, yet the writer depends, more than ever, on research to produce quality, informed and persuasive books.  Research is what separates one book from another – and that puts books above all other sources.  

Learn the art of research and you’ll become a much better writer.

All-New 2017 Book Marketing & PR Toolkit 

Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog 2017©. Born and raised in Brooklyn, now resides in Westchester. Named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby 

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