Cool Research Tools

Whether fiction or nonfiction, a book's credibility is tied to accurate research. Here are some amazing online research tools.

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Historic America

Chronicling America helps you search America's historic newspapers pages from 1836-1922 or use the U.S. Newspaper Directory to find information about American newspapers published between 1690-present. This website gives you access to Historical Newspapers and is made possible by the National Digital Newspaper Program (NDNP), a partnership between the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the Library of Congress (LC).

This project is a long-term effort to develop an Internet-based, searchable database of U.S. newspapers with descriptive information and select digitization of historic pages. Please see or for more information on program guidelines, participation, and technical information.

National Day

TheUltimateHolidaySite is one you need to remember. If you blog or freelance write, chances are you're always looking for topics. A good source of inspiration is this listing of holidays and National (whatever) Day. For example, today, May 31, is National Speak In Complete Sentences Day. There are many sites that list these national days, but I particularly like this one.

Geographic Locator

Need to know what's in the area about which you're writing? Waymarking is a great resource for finding everything from businesses to landmarks around the world. (Thanks to Kim Komando who mentioned this in one of her newsletters.) Search thousands of Waymarks by category or location to find out what interesting landmarks are near you or the geographic location about which you're writing.


Need to know something about weather or weather data try WeatherBase or WeatherResearch. If you need historical data about weather, the National Climate Data Center is excellent.

Basic Reference Books

Once, every writer had a thesaurus and a dictionary on his/her desk. I still do. However, many people use those references included with their word processing software. For more complete and more complexly rich sources, try these: and or the two at which I like. One great thing about online resources is that you can hear the pronunciation.

Takeaway Truth

If you get a fact wrong, believe it or not, someone out there knows the correct information, and they will feel a zeal comparable only to that of a reformed sinner in their desire to let you, and the entire world, know that you got it wrong.


  1. I do most of my research using encyclopedias. But thanks for sharing this. I'll definitely check them out. :)

  2. Hi, MIchael Abayomi!

    Nothing wrong with encyclopedias as long as they are current.

    Thanks for visiting and commenting.