Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
Places to Start
Oxford English Dictionary (OED)
Where does your word come from? What other meanings does it have? This can be a great place to start!
Academic Search Ultimate
Do a big search on your word? What ways are scholars using your word? Any pop culture references? This database will catch uses in news, culture, science and more.
Newspaper Source Plus
What was happening at the time of the events you're writing about? What historical events relate to your word? News events can provide good places to explore.
Visit the place you're writing about. Go back if you can - it can help trigger memories and can provide detail for stronger imagery and scenes.
Look through old journals and other writing.
Talk to other people in your stories. Who else witnessed your stories? What do they remember? What are their perspectives?