While creative writing and poetry may not need research sources which literature scholars need, there are times when tools and resources are helpful.
To look for articles in journals, you will need to start with a research database. Check the Databases tab on the library home page and select the Literature subject limiter for the most appropriate available licensed resources. These provide full text or abstracts of articles from thousands of journals and other sources.
Some databases such as MLA do not offer full text of the articles. Use the button to check our other resources for full text.
Not everything is available on the Internet, and as old-fashioned as it may seem, the best place to begin your research is in your library's collection -- Really! A lot of time and money is spent on collecting the best for your courses -- especially if you are feeling overwhelmed by the project. To search for books, you need to use a library catalog. Depending on how much time you have, you have a couple of options for extending your search.
Search our local collection of about 250,000 books.
How to Search the Catalog
The simplest way to get started is by using the default KEYWORD search. Type in one or two words about your topic (examples are: rhetoric, creative writing, narratives) to begin your search.
Once you have a list of results (these are book and journal titles), click on likely titles to view the entire record.
For more precise searching, look at the SUBJECTS on items that meet your research needs and follow those links to find other works on your topic that don't necessarily use the same terminology that you did in the keyword search. An example is a broad keyword search on 'narrative writing', with 677 items returned on all types of narrative writing. But then you find the subject heading Narration (Rhetoric) with only 38 titles to examine and some of which did not return in the 'narrative writing' search.
Other Options in Books
Circuit (1-3 day delivery)
Search the collections of other San Diego area libraries -- about 3,000,000 books. Find and request books directly online; pick them up at our Library in 1-3 days.
WorldCat (5-10 day delivery)
Search the collections of libraries world-wide -- about 52,000,000 books. Find a book in this database, and fill-out an Interlibrary Loan delivery request. Books will be delivered to Library for pickup.
- Electronic Books on Writing and Rhetoric (University of Colorado)
- Rhetoric and Composition
- Rhetoric Page at Kettering University
- Voice of the Shuttle Literary Theory
- Voice of the Shuttle Technology of Writing
Writing Center Sites
- CSUSM Writing Center
- Resources for Writers: George Mason University
- OWL (Purdue University Online Writing Center)
- University of Wisconsin-Madison Writing Center
Full-text Literature Sites
- Google Book Search
- Bartleby.com provides free access to reference, verse, fiction and non-fiction works
- Digital Scriptorium (University of California) offers renaissance and medieval digitized manuscripts
- Electronic Text Center (University of Virginia): Publicly-Accessible Texts collection offers a variety of English, religious, and foreign language collections.
- eScholarship Editions offers free access to approximately 500 University of California Press titles.
- EServer.org University of Washington-hosted site for contributions in a variety of disciplines
- Project Gutenberg full text literature
- Online Books Page (University of Pennsylvania) searchable by Library of Congress subject, title, author and keyword
- Oxford Text Archive collects electronic texts in a variety of languages for browse or search
- Posner Collection at Carnegie Mellon University includes works on science, arts and literature
- Smithsonian Institution Digital Library offers a range of digitized works concentrating on American history and sciences
- Universal Library (Carnegie Mellon's Million Books Project)
- Online Texts (University of Chicago)
- Wright American Fiction 19th century American fiction collection based on Wright's Bibliography of American Fiction, 1851-1875. Caution! Not all text was proofread whebn scanned
Electronic Books and Technologies
- Electronic Books in Libraries provides links to information about various e-book initiatives and tools
- Electronic Book Review collects reviews of ebooks
- The Institute for the Future of the Book provides a forum for discussion of electronically-based texts and software.
Tutorials and Tools
- Elements of Style (Strunk, 1918, 1999 through Bartleby.com)
- Gale Literary Index a free-access index to the contents of Dictionary of Literary Criticism, Nineteenth Century Criticism and other collections held by CSUSM)
- Guide to Grammar & Writing (hosted by Capital Community College)
- Handbook of Rhetorical Devices (from VirtualSalt)
- OWL (Online Writing Lab) Purdue University's tutorial
- Style Book (Illinois Valley Community College)
Citing Your Sources
As you write your papers in LTWR courses, you'll need to cite passages and ideas from the sources you've found. You may find the following sites useful to supplement Keys for Writers and the MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers.
- MLA Citation Guide
Examples of how to cite the most-used sources from CSUSM.
- Humanities: Documenting Sources
Diana Hacker's site demonstrating in-text and bibliographic formats.
Literary Market Place
Listings for publishers, agents, manufacturers and other businesses associated with publishing. Free users have access to partial content of the full resource found in Library Reference at PN161 .L5
Similar to LMP with focus on the writer, rather than publisher. Of special note are tips to novice and experienced professional writers and a glossary of terms used in the writing profession (See "encyclopedia" link.) (Full resource in Library Reference at PN161 .W83)
Organizations, Listervs and Blogs
- Directory Of Open Access Journals freely-available full text online journals
- Modern Language Association
- Rhetoric Society of America
- WAC Clearinghouse (University of Colorado)