NEED A LITTLE HELP WITH A REAL-WORLD DETAIL -- historical, medical, linguistic, or cultural? This is the place for you. If you need to verify a canon point, however, we recommend you go to The Twilight Lexicon.
In the tradition of groups like hp_britglish, sg_research, askahistorian, little_details, etc., this community is to help find the answers to real world details needed by fanfic authors, but with a specific focus on Twilight. Nonetheless, the community isn't only for authors. We need people willing and able to answer questions, too. So if you're not a writer or editor, but would like to contribute to fanfic, this is one option.
What are we open to tackling?
1) U.S. Culture and Language. Non-Americans who need to verify terminology differences or cultural details: it's a parking lot, not a car park; it's a schedule, not a time-table; we major in a subject, we don't read in it. What are common traditions for high school proms? What sorts of sports or clubs are available in U.S. high schools? What time of the year are college applications usually made, or heard back from? What do Americans do on the 4th of July? ... etc.
2) Geography and scenery. Where is ___ ... and how long would it take to get there? For instance, Canada is Really Big and driving to Alaska from Washington state would take more than just one day (especially in winter) ... even for lead-foot Edward who never needs to stop for food or the bathroom. But this can also include questions like, "What sorts of trees would you see in Texas?"
3) History. The Cullens have lived through a lot of history. Some things can be easy to find out (When was Al Capone active in Chicago?) ... some -- especially details of daily life -- can be tougher. (Where would you likely find the bathroom in an upper-class house built around the turn of the century? [The basement] Before self-stick pads and tampons, what did women use? [pads and belts])
4) American Indian cultural questions. Although be aware that tribal differences can be great, and there isn't a single "Native American" (NA) language, religion or culture, although some things are fairly panIndian by this point. (twilight_ndnz might also interest you.)
5) Medical, mechanical, sports and camping, etc. Carlisle is a doc, Rosalie and Jacob both work on cars, Jasper reads philosophy, Esme restores houses and antiques, all the Cullens love baseball and go camping regularly, etc. We can take a stab at helping with these things as well.
We do expect you to have done some searching on your own first. I'll do my best to add questions/answers to memories, and I'll be creating tags. CHECK THEM FIRST. We'll get testy if we have to answer the same question overandoverandover. When you post a question, please tell us:
Question type: (history, U.S. culture, Yankee English, medical, NA question, geography, etc.) How I've researched it: (tell us where you've looked, what Google searches, what books you may have checked, etc.) My Query:
Please use tags! We have a lot of tags, and I'll create more at need. It will help people to find previously asked questions if you tag it!
If your query involves sex or similar adult concepts, even if it's fairly clinical, we will ask you to put it behind an LJ cut, just to be on the safe side. I'm not going to be policing the ages of members and what they're asking; I'm the mod, not your mom. *grin* But this way, those who want to avoid adult concepts can.
As noted above, this isn't the place to ask canon questions you can find out from the Lexicon. Don't be lazy. Link's above; look it up.
Give time for a question to receive an answer. Not everyone lives hooked up to the internet. Some questions may receive an answer pretty quickly, some may take days. If you need the answer right now, try a couple of other communities like little_details. Only questions that have received an answer may not be asked again, but we do request that you let a little time pass before trying again. Membership does change, and we may not have anybody to answer this month, but could next month; waiting only a few days probably won't make much difference, however.
Be polite, both when asking questions and when answering them. First, there are no stupid questions. Second, if you think somebody has answered the question wrongly, please be courteous when correcting it. "The way I learned/heard it ..." or "I believe it may be that ..." If you're corrected, don't take it personally. And don't be afraid to say, "I think ..." instead of making a definitive claim unless you are THE leading expert in ___.
For some answers, it would probably be a good idea to say HOW you know ___... "I grew up in Washington state ..." or "I have a medical degree ..." or "I'm a grad student studying the Progressive Era ..." or "I'm an American Indian ..." Be aware of relative levels of authority. An emergency room doc or EMT will probably know more about treating a gunshot wound than a second-year medical student or an undergraduate biology major. But there are all sorts of ways to learn things. Somebody with a deep interest in the Great War who's read a lot may still know more about it than, say, a Renaissance history professor. You don't have to have a degree in something to know about it ... but be aware of your personal limits. Many years ago, the Delphic Oracle was asked, "Who's the wisest man in all of Greece?" and for once, she gave an unequivocal answer: Socrates. When Socrates was told this, he reportedly laughed and said, "It's because I know how much I don't know." It's wise to know you might not know. *grin* This comm is to help people get their questions answered, not to slide into quarrels of one-upmanship about expertise. ;>
I'm not going to keep track of every conversation in comments for every post. If someone is being particularly rude or insulting, please shoot me email and I'll check it out. But sometimes people are just blunt; they're not being rude. Btw, there's NEVER cause on this comm to use foul language or name calling unless the question concerns foul language and name calling in __ era. ;> There's not a lot that will get you banned, but rudeness will. So will impatience for an answer or failure to follow the rules. I know a lot of Twilight fans are young, and relatively new to fandom and the internet -- but age isn't an excuse for annoying behavior.
We're not here to help you find a beta reader; don't even ask. If, in the course of a conversation in comments, somebody offers to look at your story, that's fine, but we're here for fact checks, NOT for beta shopping.
---- Your mod is minisinoo. In RL, she's a college history professor and an American Indian (but not Quileuete). She's also a writer, and believes in practicing the art of getting it right ... which is why she made this community, even if she writes in Harry Potter much more than in Twilight. Her website, if you're looking for her or her work. She also moderates twilight_ndnz.