Research According to Humphrey


Hi. I’m Humphrey. I’m a cat. I’m also a writer. (Some of you already know that.) As a writer, when I want to do research, I’ve got a few tricks up my sleeve.

For instance, recently I’ve been working on a manuscript about cats during the American Revolution. So one of the books I decided to read was John Adams by David McCullough. But I didn’t just read the book. That’s not the cat’s meow. I made sure to read all the footnotes in the back. Especially the names of the research sources David used to write his book.


I mean, why try to reinvent the catfood can? Why try to find all the good research sources on my own? I just sneak a careful peek in the backs of my main research books and see which sources they used. Then I read ’em, too. It makes my job so much easier!

So when I read in the notes that David McCullough loved reading the book Humphrey Clinker, I knew I wanted to read it, too. After all, the title character has a great name, don’t you agree?

So I visited WorldCat (Anything “cat” has got to be good!) and found the library closest to me that carried the book. Fortunately, I already had a library card for that library system. So I went to that library’s online book catalog, ordered it in, and requested it to arrive at my local library. This is a picture of me reading it. I look pretty studious, don’t I?

So there you have it. One of my biggest research secrets. Who let the cat out of the bag? Now you can try it, too.