Unusual Research Topics

Question: what's the strangest item you've ever researched?

Kristen recently posted a sample of the topics she’s researching for her latest work in progress, noting that someone who didn’t know she was a writer, or wasn’t aware of the story elements, might start wondering about the strangeness of her Google search history.
Mine might look a little something like this:

Caves in the Mediterranean region
Cistercians vs Benedictines
How to defeat or outrun Saracen pirates
What fruits grow in which seasons?
Medieval and Renaissance meteorites and volcanoes
Was chivalry dying out by the end of the 15th Century?
Monetary systems and “passports” in the Renaissance
Sailing without a map or compass
How to dress as and pretend you’re a nun
Leather shoes and how long they might last

One area of research that overlaps my wip and Kristen’s: names of saints. Who’d have thought?

Probably the strangest item I’ve ever researched (whether through Google or at the library) is the best way to set fire to a manor house and, for The Face of A Lion, sacrificial rituals at the Temple of Artemis in Ephesus.


Aubrie said…
I often wonder about that myself! I google a lot of space terms and Greek myths.
India Drummond said…
Places to go salsa dancing in San Francisco on a Tuesday night.
Anne Gallagher said…
My research involved sailing ships in for Her Majesty's Royal Navy in 1816, and all the crew members. Large war horses, butler duties, the difference between a chatelaine and a butler, costumes for balls, the Prince Regent (ugh!) and classical Greek names.

I love research, problem is I could spend all my time doing that and get no writing done.
Deniz Bevan said…
Now I'm on to volcanoes... It's true, sometimes it's fun to keep researching, but then I've got to remember that it's the words that count!
Deniz Bevan said…
Volcanoes and meteorites!
Unknown said…
I've written 2 dissertations on blood ritual in Ancient Egypt, so for that I researched ancient Egyptian vampires and 'that time of the month' in Ancient Egypt (I did an entire chapter on that, I now know things that no man should ever know ...)
Deniz Bevan said…
Very brave of you Jamie! Hope you erased the Google history and your library card records... :-)