06 November 2019

Writing Update & Googling Weird and Wonderful Stuff | IWSG

The Insecure Writer's Support Group (IWSG) is a place to share and encourage, where writers can express their doubts and concerns without appearing foolish or weak. It's a great place to mingle with like minded people each month during IWSG day.

Every month there's an optional question which may prompt folks to share advice, insights, a personal experience or story. Some folks answer the question in their IWSG blog post or let it inspire them if they're struggling with what to say.

This month's optional question is:

"What's the strangest thing you've ever googled in researching a story?"
Check out how people have answered this month's question, as well as the other insecurities and writing topics they may have shared by visiting the IWSG sign-up list here. You can find out how I answered the question below.

* * *

Before I dive into this month's question, a bit of a blog and a writing update.

Let's start with the blog.

[Scratches her head and tries to figure out what to say.]

[Head hurting because she scratched it too much, she changes tack.]

Okay, let's start with the writing update. Things have been busy on the writing front. Crazy busy, but also good busy. Crazy is good, right?

I finished book #4 in my cozy mystery series and sent it to beta readers last month. {Cue all the insecurities that come with sharing your work.} I'm hoping to publish it next month if all goes well with the final revisions and my editor. And now NaNoWriMo is upon us and I'm working on book #5. Plus, I've been putting some energy into marketing my prequel novella through newsletter swaps and group promos with the aim of drawing in new readers for my series. And trying to get more reviews for my back list through BookSprout.

Which brings us back to the blogging update.

[Pauses to drink some coffee, then takes a deep breath.]

I've been terrible at blogging lately. And not just posting regularly here on this blog, but also visiting my blogging buddies. I need to do better. I almost didn't post today, but I knew that if I didn't, I'd be missing out on connecting with the wonderful folks I've met in the writing and blogging community.

Okay, enough about that. Let's talk my weird and wonderful (and slightly scary) google search history. Over the past few months, I've searched for various ways to kill people, how to get away with murder, and what knife and gunshot wounds look like. I've also researched various diseases to give to my characters. Odd how my job is to take all of that horrifying stuff and work it into a lighthearted cozy mystery. You wouldn't really think "cozy" and "murder" go together, but somehow they do.

On the weird side of things, my current work in progress features pub trivia contests so I've been googling for weird facts. Did you know that it's illegal to duel with water pistols in Massachusetts? Or that Oscar the Grouch used to be orange?

I'll do my best to visit folks and comment, but it may take me a few days as I need to get some serious NaNoWriMo words written as I'll be distracted for a good chunk of the month while I'm visiting family.

What weird and wonderful things do you google?

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This prequel novella is set around twelve years before Murder at the Marina and tells the story of Mollie's roller derby days and how she and Scooter met. Find out more at ellenjacobsonauthor.com


  1. That's awesome about your next book!
    I know someone who has a blog full of those weird facts and state laws! Let me know if you want his blog address.

  2. I love weird trivia! Oscar the Grouch used to be orange?! :o

    Good luck with NaNo! I'm there, too. :)

  3. I will lag in the blogging at times too. I always tell myself that the words come first. They must be written, or what are we blogging for? I think people understand when we get busy and kind of fall off the face of the blogging earth for a bit and cheer when we make it back.

    I can;t wait to read the new story!

  4. Newsletter swaps! Now you've given me ideas.

    Keep hitting the words.

  5. So much writing going on! Bravo! I'm with Diane, one of the reasons I love being a part of this blogging community is all the ideas that come up. Thanks for sharing yours.

  6. I'm not a writer, but I do google stuff and often. Usually it's words that I don't know the meaning of. I love google for that.

    Have a fabulous day, Ellen. ♥

  7. Good job getting #4 finished! I hear you on the blogging side of things. I was away for some time, and I was amazed when I finally came back and the community is still strong. :)

  8. Book #4 in the hopper and book #5 getting on the pages! You rock! Yeah, the social media thing is tough. It's supposed to be fun and then it's a time-sucking chore. I'm backing off for the rest of the year and taking December off completely after IWSG. I have got to get my focus on my WsIP or I'm never going to publish.

  9. I'm totally with you on the slow down in blogging. Life just has a way of bogging things down.

  10. Congrats on your new book. I think it's okay to slow down on blogging but you'd be sorry if you lost the connections. They are the most personal ones I have.

  11. If you're doing NANO, you're one busy writer. Good luck on your word count.

    Hope your book launch goes smoothly. Congratulations.

  12. Darn, and I had a water pistol duel scheduled for tomorrow! Guess I'll have to back out ;)
    Good luck with NaNo! This is the most successful one I've ever had so far. Hope it continues.

  13. You always crack me up. Thanks for the laugh and visit when you can. ;-)

    Anna from elements of emaginette

  14. Congrats on new book. I signed up for your newsletter. Happy IWSG Day!

  15. How many folks did you help by telling us it's illegal to duel with water pistols? Ha Ha. Love your mix of horror and humor. Cheers.
    Lynn La Vita @ Writers Supporting Writers

  16. I almost didn't post this month too, but like you it was knowing I'd be missing out on such a great community.
    Now contemplating how much damage you can do with a water pistol...

  17. I had no idea Oscar used to be orange. Must have been before my kids started watching 40+ years ago. Happy to hear you finished #4. Looking forward to reading it.

  18. Congrats on finishing #4, and good luck with the NaNo and book #5. (You go, girl!)

  19. I'm just thrilled you're writing! Best wishes on much success. ~grin~ Be well, my dear.

  20. I hope you clear your browsing history every so often. It'd look awful odd if something unexpected happened and the authorities had to confiscate your computer and saw where you've been on the world wide web.

    Yes, I miss your comments on the blog but you are still the top commenter by 12 so you are good for at least another 12 blogs before someone else takes your commenting place!

    But seriously I'm glad you are writing. Actually I can't believe how prolific you are. (BTW - I'm 2/3 the way through DITD. Love it so far!).

  21. I’m in the same boat (as it were) about not keeping up with the blogging or visiting lately. Maybe we can both reform ourselves. And maybe I should learn more about newsletter swaps :)

  22. The Sesame Street books i have show Oscar as orange, they were published the year it came out. People think i am crazy when i ask why his color changed.

    Anyway, i hope you are having fun writing, and if you catch up on reading, great! If not, there is always January when the holidays are over.

  23. All I can tell is that I think you’re doing great, Ellen! You are focusing on the right things: writing books and marketing. You seriously get heaps done in a month, let alone a year!! I’m sure you’re not missing Simon! :-)

  24. Wow. You are busy on the writing front! As to blogging lameness...as you can tell by how late I'm commenting on this, I have complete understand. Am already excited for your next book!

  25. Oh, best wishes on your new book and the NaNo challenge. ~hugs~ I've fallen behind thanks to battling over medical bills. Oh, well. I've been lucky until now about proper payment and my health remains pretty darn good, so I shouldn't complain. And I will catch up, too. :) Happy Writing!

  26. I'm a late - mid-November - visitor, so blame NaNoWriMo and it's rabbit-ignoring runs. At least, it means Book 1 of my series - as opposed to 2 or 4 - might get finished. Or not.

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