I (Daniel) have a dream of making government information relevant to people’s lives regardless of walk of life. I think it is a dream many government information specialists/documents librarians share.
In making government information relevant to people we need to answer the question in their minds – “What’s in it for me?” If we can answer that question, people will care about the resource, in this case government information.
In service to my dream I have created a website called Writer’s Guide to Government Information because I know many fiction writers are interested in getting things right in their stories. Writer’s Guide is largely based on US federal information and frequently references Federal Depository Libraries in its entries. You can find it at http://writersguidetogovinfo.
The aim of this site is to point you to government information resources that will help you add realistic details to the [fiction] stories you write. Clicking on the titles below will take you to a list of resources in that area.
If you want the longer story of why I put the site together and how long it took, check out the about the site section of the website.
I still need to finish three of the appendices, but all of the 467 individual annotations are done and I think this site is ready to serve most writers. The site is divided into the main resource sections:
- Physical Setting
- Inspiration from the Visible World
- Flora and Fauna
- Nations of the World
- General History
- Military History
- Language and Culture
- What If Your Story Isn’t Set on Earth?
- Fictional Home and Work Life
- Crimes, Criminals, Cops and Crimefighters
- Health Issues and Tragic Complications
- Kids Have Problems Too
- When Bad Things Happen
- Real People
- Everything and Everyone Dies
Further breakdown of these categories is available from the Table of Contents page.
Writers who plan to focus in on a particular state, ought to check out Appendix C: Finding Specific Information on US States.
Please check out a section that looks interesting. If you like it, tell your friends, especially fiction writers. I’d also be grateful if you’d use the stars at the bottom of a resource to rate its usefulness. If you don’t think it will be useful to fiction writers, please let me know why. A comment here is fine or you can either comment on the resource itself or use my contact form.
Thanks for having a look. I have a special request for academic librarians. If this resource looks useful to you, please pass it along to your English department, campus writing center or any fiction writing groups you know about. I also suspect that military history enthusiasts, and to a lesser extent genealogists, will find the site helpful.
I haven’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good, so feel free to provide feedback on any errors or shortcomings you find.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.