What claim are you making about the wasteland you've chosen? And what do you need to know about the wasteland to support your claim?
This is where research comes in.
► Choose relevant keywords. You might start with the name of the wasteland you've chosen -- e.g., the BJAT Superfund Site in Franklin, Mass. If that doesn't bring up enough material, try using a more general word or phrase: e.g., hazardous waste sites.
► Add more keywords that express your idea or claim: e.g., slums
► Truncate, or shorten, your keywords with a wildcard character (usually an asterisk) to bring in variations. For example, desolat* will give you search results containing desolate and desolation.
► Use the search options to find your keywords in prominent places, such as the title of an article or the subject.
► Think of synonyms or other alternative words or phrases: e.g., deserted, abandoned, derelict, ruined, empty, isolated, uninhabited, forsaken, desolate, neglected, forgotten.
► Every database provides ways to narrow your search results. See the examples at the left from HOLLIS. You can always turn off a search limit if it proves too restrictive.
► When you find a really good result, see if the citation provides other keywords, headings, or tags that will link to similar material.
► Search news databases for facts about the wasteland, what caused it, or what controversies or movements have arisen in response to it.
► Scan the bibliographic references or footnotes of an article or a book for other good sources.
► In HOLLIS records, click on the Subject links to bring up other books that have the same subject.