Sunday, July 1, 2007

The Rain In Spain Stays Mainly in the Plain

Remember the rule: Write what you know? Although this golden nugget has some gravity in truth, it doesn't give the writer nearly enough credit for imagination and bonus points for research. Inevitably, a writer will need resources. Accurate ones. One of the most basic and essential parts of location research is weather. Since weather is akin to a fifth family member in my house, I'm well within the boundaries of the rule.

Most countries have a division of their government devoted to the study and recording of weather information. The National Weather Service provides the public with the most accurate information since the United States government began an agency to record weather data in the late 1800s. Environment Canada runs the National Climate Data and Information Archive and offers normal and extreme data since 1961.

Private industry and media weather organizations' focus lies in the most immediate, gratifying, often eye-catching information. By using government regulated agencies, researchers have access to long-range trends, the benefit of consistent, unprecedented archives, astronomical data (tides, times (sunrise/sunset), moon phases) and meteorological experts who have committed themselves to providing products and information to the citizens in their area. If you can't find what you're looking for in the phenomenal archives online, call the local weather office in your area of interest, staffed 24/7 by scientists happy to answer your questions, provided they're not busy protecting life and property in a hurricane or other severe situation.

For United States archives, bookmark this::

Although this is the starting point for the Southern Region of the National Weather Service, the home page map is a fast kick start to research. Select the area you're targeting, choose the local climate feature in the left margin and you'll find indexed tabs of all the archived data.
Try getting all that from Jim Cantore.
Today's weather::Is the ark finished yet??

1 comment:

Sandra Ferguson said...

As a matter of fact, I just finished hammering the last nail in place and wouldn't you know it--SUN!

Does God have a sense of humor or what?

Do you love my water sweeping on my blog? If you missed it, check out my great backside. Could my kid not have photographed me from another angle? Why did I have kids? Oh yeah, it sounded like more fun than dogs. What was I thinking?

Thanks for the great tips on the weather. I can always use more research sites.