Writing a story, sometimes we need to collide the imagination with the facts. Even work of fiction requires the true logic to be performed convincingly. So we do the story research. And the cheapest, easiest one is the online research.
Maybe you already know, beside via Google or Yahoo!, one of the resources is Wikipedia. The online encyclopedia has boosted its database from time to time. I was thinking, because everyone can take part in writing the entries, Wikipedia is never reliable as a resource. I was wrong. Moreover, almost everything I’ve searched is there. But, you would find less commercial stuffs there. For instance, the certain brands, prices, positive-negative points, user’s profile, etc.
I wrote something about a product on Wikipedia. It had been displayed. But the following day I checked, my writing has gone. Meanwhile, a friend of mine told me that he wrote on the portal too, about a businessman’s biography. It had been displayed for 15 minutes, then, has been deleted by the editor. A reason he could predict: his entry writing was considered too commercial, not for public interest.
So, forget about Wikipedia as a tool of researching the commercial products. For the alternative, try ShopWiki. It is a crawling search engine, about things to sale. But the portal has the Wiki system, thus everybody can write there. This is the mixture of Google and Wikipedia.
You will get inspiration about how to give fashion description to your fictive characters. Also, you can compare which car is appropriate for your villain, in what price (let’s say your story is about a car robber who is trying to negotiate with a buyer). Hence, even if we know nothing about the automotive and market, we won’t look stupid in front of the readers.
However, ShopWiki is noncommercial portal. So, it does not engage in any trade. Actually, the portal stands for giving shopping guide (like here, for example). But with some creativity, of course this big database can be very useful as a resource.
Too bad, ShopWiki has been building the list of US products and webstores only, so far.
Dalam menulis cerita, adakalanya kita perlu membenturkan imajinasi dengan fakta-fakta. Karena fiksi pun perlu logika yang benar untuk bisa tampil meyakinkan. Riset cerita adalah solusinya. Riset yang paling murah dan gampang, saya rasa adalah riset online. Anda mungkin sudah tahu, salah satu situs yang bisa dijadikan rujukan ialah Wikipedia. Tapi untuk meriset produk-produk komersial (harga, pasar, kelebihan-kekurangan, dsb.), cobalah ShopWiki. ShopWiki merupakan search engine ber-crawler yang sekaligus bersistem Wiki (semua orang bisa urun informasi). Jadi sudah pasti databasenya akan terus bertambah dengan cepat. Dengan sedikit kreativitas, di sana Anda pun akan dapat informasi dan inspirasi, misalnya, pakaian tokoh-tokoh Anda, mobil mana yang lebih tepat digunakan tokoh penjahat Anda. Tapi sayang, saat ini cakupan ShopWiki masih pada produk dan toko online di Amerika Serikat.