Tracking Research Books

LibraryI wish the library would stop lying, admit they track what I read AND allow me to track what I’m reading, too. ūüôā

I’m tired of being 30 pages into a book like, “this sounds familiar, let me see if this ends how I think it does.” Only to find I’ve read it before. This keeps happening with books I’m using for research… Except I’m not sure if I’ve read them before, because they are all about the Harlem Renaissance… and after you’ve read a few it’s rare that you find new information.

I’ve read hundreds of books over the past few years about the Harlem Renaissance. ¬†I didn’t keep a list initially. ¬†Now I’m writing down books as I read. ¬†I’m even considering entering a bibliography at the end of my next historical fiction.

There are so many books that helped me imagine early 1900’s Harlem. ¬†Each book focuses on something different. ¬†Some focus on housing and employment, another might be about the politics, some the journey from the south to Harlem and others about art and music. ¬†There are so many great books…

I’ve read so many books now, it’s getting hard to tell what I haven’t read outside of the small list of thirty or so books I wrote down recently. ¬†Also, it’s difficult to tell when you are rereading a nonfiction if you are reading several on the same subject. ¬†Some of them share the same name or very similar names. ¬†There are two books in particular that have the same cover. ¬†On top of that, many books share the same statistics and events. ¬†Usually I can only tell a book is new if I learn something I haven’t already noted.

Research is fun. I’ve got to figure out when I’ve done enough to start writing. ¬†I’m contemplating reading a few novels written during the Harlem Renaissance. ¬†I think a fiction would help me see what it was like to stroll down 7th avenue or how people felt in the clubs.

I’m grateful a subject and character I love found me.



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