The first step in finding research material for my Edgar Allen Poe project was to decide what part of it to focus on. Because my goal is to explore Poe’s publishing goals and compare them to the reality and reception of his career, I decided to start by finding something that provides some basic information about his publishing career. A good place to start is Poets.org (figure 1), which is the official website of the American Academy of Poets. I found this website by asking a librarian about reliable literary sources on the web. By searching for “Edgar Allen Poe” in the search bar on the website (2) I was able to find his page (3). Then I browsed the “Further Reading: Related Prose Section” (4) and I was able to identify articles that interested me by looking for key words like “publishers” (5).
When I found an article with an appropriate title. In this case, I was looking for an article about publishing and I found an article titled “Edgar Allen Poe’s Publisher’s Row”. I read it to make sure it had information relevant to my project. After reading the introduction, it was clear that this article contained information about a period later in Poe’s career when he went to New York to focus on magazine publishing. Its presence on Poets.org gives it certain authority, because it is endorsed by a respected poetic society. This website also contains other information on Poe that may prove useful later in the research process.
I emailed this document to myself, and printed it for safekeeping.