SSP074 Story Research

Almost literally, Sterling and Stone is a house built on research… or the lack thereof. In part, our collaboration started because of a research roadblock, a dare, and putting a Unicorn in a Western novel. And though we proudly retell that story when it’s useful, the reality of our day-to-day storytelling is different. We do a lot of research. The trick is chasing the right lead. In today’s podcast, we share how we approach the research portion of our pre-production and give a few hacks to help you avoid the Wikipedia research hole.
We Talk About:
Sean is reading and re-reading the Jim Collins catalog and enjoying it.
Dave is reading Lost Connections by Johann Hari (
Johnny is absolutely enjoying-without-any-hate-watching-what-so-ever Riverdale, Season 3 (
The distinction between “get to research” and “have to research.”
Using research for immersion and character.
Dave’s need for authenticity.
Directing the camera and trusting the reader’s imagination.
Acquiring new experiences.
The 80/20 rule for research and finding the few details that matter.
Johnny and Sean’s favorite hacks for side-stepping deep research.

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