Oh The Things You’ll Research!

It’s funny the crazy things you come up with to research when you’re writing. I’ll admit when I’m doing Draft 1, especially during NaNo, I’m not really paying much attention to really in-depth detail. Unless I’ve really planned ahead and done the work ahead of time. I’m just trying to get the info down. So when I can do a quick Google search and find what I’m looking for in a nice, easy-to-use bit, that just makes my day. I can get back to writing and not have to waste hours researching.

That is, after all, a constant threat to productivity. All it takes is one or two searches, and suddenly you’re off on research for the next 2+ hours, wondering why your word count isn’t going anywhere.

Well not this gal! (At least not today…)

Here are some of the amusing things I’ve had the pleasure of researching the last few days, and what I’ve learned.


Archaic Medical Terms

I never had an appreciation for just how many words meant ‘alcoholic’ until I looked over this list. It includes everything from Brandy Face and Brandy Nose, to Blue Devils and Barrel Fever. It’s really a good example of how different practitioners in different areas of the world came up with multiple terms for the same affliction. You take for granted that everybody calls it the same thing today.

They say that the number of words you use to describe something in a language symbolizes just how important it is to that culture. If that’s the case, alcohol was incredibly important.


Gambling in Japan

Did I mention I’m working on a Yu-Gi-Oh! fan fiction piece for Camp NaNo this July? I don’t want to give too many details, but the job for one of the characters was to work as a dealer in a casino. Unfortunately I found out that casinos are illegal in Japan. Who knew? It apparently keeps coming up as a possibility to get passed, and has a good amount of popularity, but it keeps getting struck down. So I had flub my story a bit so that it would work.

I wanted to make sure that the world was plausible. It doesn’t have to be 100% accurate, but I didn’t want the reader to have to stretch too far to see that it could happen. What I thought was interesting was this:

On April 4, 2011, Shintaro Ishihara, the current Tokyo Governor, have spoken against the pachinko parlours, arguing that the popular game together with vending machines eat up about 1000kWh. He said that following the consequences the earthquake of March 11, 2011, the government asked people to reduce energy consumption, but asking wasn’t enough and the government order should have been enacted.


(Pulled from Wikipedia. I know not the best resource in the world, but I thought the idea was interesting.)

I guess I never really considered just how much energy a casino would waste. I don’t really live near one, and have never visited one either, but I can guess that Las Vegas is probably an enormous power house. Especially when you consider that it can be seen from outer space.


Seriously that is Vegas at Night. It looks like it’s surrounded by ocean instead of desert.

So I can totally understand why the current Tokyo Governor is not wanting them put in.

(But I can do what I want in fiction, right?)