Earlier, I reported that I've been in contact with Paul Butler to see if he could observe any of the stars from the Schaefer paper I mentioned in my first post on this topic. I got an Email the other day saying four of the nine stars have been observed (including κ Cet, which had been previously observed). The data analysis is still in the works, so no word yet on whether or not they have planets, but it's a good start in a new direction.
From here, I think the next step may be to start looking at archival data of these stars: both the ones that have been known to have flares to see if they've done anything else exciting, as well as the ones that are known to have close in planets to see if they've done anything exciting. At some point next week I'll also be meeting with another one of the professors in the department who's more experienced with observational astronomy than the professor I'm working with who focuses more on astrobiology than stellar properties.