Fuel Your Fiction: The Importance Of Research

Fuel Your Fiction: The Importance Of Research

What is fiction?

Fiction is a genre of storytelling that involves creating imaginary worlds, characters and situations. It can deal with historical eras, contemporary times or a futuristic world.  There is absolutely no limit when it comes to fiction—the author can even create a completely fantastical world that no one has ever heard about before. There are multiple variations or subgenres that come under the umbrella of fiction. Magical realism, romance, science fiction, dystopia, horror and thriller are a few examples.

As opposed to nonfiction, this genre aims to entertain people. Additionally, the goal is to allow the audience to escape reality and enter an alternate universe. The need for relaxation is what urges people to pick up fictitious work. So, it is the author’s responsibility to create a believable book that allows the readers to completely immerse themselves in. And this is where research plays a vital role.

Let’s look at the various ways in which research aids the author in adding depth, authenticity and credibility to the storytelling process.

Why should you research before writing fiction?
  1. Assertion of authorship
  • When readers encounter well-researched work, they are compelled to believe the book. Such works build credibility and trust in the author and their works. Authors can build reader engagement by making sure the details in their books are on point.


  • Research empowers the authors in a way that they become confident in their writing. Everyone knows that knowledge is power and the same applies while writing fiction. It may not be a real story but it has to be convincing enough. When the writer has equipped themselves with a good understanding of what they are going to write about, they captivate the audience with well-informed works.


  1. Craft authentic environments
  • Imagine is the foundation of any fiction work but it is research that helps bring it to life. Good fiction provides a good amount of detail about every aspect without overwhelming the reader. To do this, the authors themselves have to be sure about the basic setting of their story before writing it. This way, they will be able the weave in details and craft a seamless narrative. It doesn’t matter whether it is a work about the past, present or future. The major aspects—cultural, scientific, historical, etc.—have to be accurate according to the setting of the book.


  • A question arises about how research and magical realism go hand in hand when fantasy is something that doesn’t exist. The answer to that is research helps in interspersing magical elements with bits of truth in them. Exploration of cultural beliefs, traditional practices, symbols, superstitions, folklore, etc. can help in setting up a realistic world.


  1. Developing authentic characters
  • A good work is one where the readers are able to relate to the characters and feel at least a fraction of what the characters feel. To make them as real as possible, the author must delve into crafting the childhood, career, experiences, psyche and characteristic features of each of the characters. Their motivations and actions must align with their unique traits. Human beings are complex creatures—the human mind more than the body. Research is the only way to create a multi-dimensional and realistic character. This results in the audience connecting with the book on a deeper level.


  • Let’s look at an example. You are writing a historical fiction which is set in the 16th CE and one of the leading characters in your book is a teenage girl. If you were to portray this girl as a tomboy who plays cricket with the boys, it would not be believable. This is because at the given time period this would not be a scene that could have been witnessed due to various societal norms set in place.


In a historical fiction setting, meticulous research becomes vital in creating believable characters like this teenage girl, as it allows you to navigate the societal norms and constraints of that time period. By portraying her dreams and aspirations within the limitations imposed by society, you can authentically capture her struggle and bring depth to her character.

  1. Enhance the plot
  • Research not only helps in building an authentic setting and characters but also the plot. A thorough study of the domain the book focuses on allows the author to write a story without any plot holes. Compelling storylines with genuine plots are devoid of cliches and misinformation. Mistakes and inconsistencies are some things that must be prevented at all costs because they make the reader lose interest in the book.


  • Imagine reading a captivating novel centered around a lawyer, only to discover that the author has made significant errors regarding the legal system. As an uninformed reader, these mistakes may go unnoticed. However, if you possess knowledge in this area, you would be annoyed by the lack of proper research, questioning the author’s dedication to accuracy. In all likelihood, you would even consider abandoning the book altogether. This example illustrates the importance of research in creating believable plots.


  1. Emotional depth

Crafting a fictional masterpiece that resonates with readers long after they turn the final page requires a profound level of immersion. When readers develop an emotional connection with the characters and plot, the impact becomes even more profound. Through research into human emotions within cultural and historical contexts, authors can use these insights and nuances as a base for their characters’ experiences. By incorporating minute details, an authentic and realistic atmosphere emerges, captivating readers and fostering emotional investment. This symbiotic relationship between readers and narrative serves as a testament to the power of skilled storytelling. As positive reviews accumulate and the author’s fanbase expands, it becomes clear that the art of research lays the groundwork for a novel to become a bestseller.


Fiction writers have the tremendous ability to transport their audience to another world. It is a feat that can be achieved only if meticulous research has been done to support the writing. The author’s confidence must be profound in the story. Only then will the readers be captivated by the book. Hence, research is not a tool but also a guide to making your fiction a widely loved one.

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