Feb 7, 2008

write what you DON'T know

Have you heard that old writer’s saw, “write what you know”? If that’s your mantra, here’s something new to chew on from experienced writers Linda Formichelli and Ralph Keyes.

Writing Quotation: “If Linda had to write only about topics she’s had personal experience in, the possibilities would be limited to writing, Slavic linguistics, karate and how to peel a banana,” says The Renegade Writer. “Instead, she’s taken the idea “Write what you don’t know” to heart, and has published articles about artificial intelligence, game theory, what astronauts eat on the space shuttle, migrant health care, trolley parks, customer relationship management, natural health care for pets, and much more.”

In a similar vein, Ralph Keyes says “If you're not scared, you're not writing (anything of consequence, that is).” Keyes thinks this is probably the key comment in his book The Courage to Write – though you can bet there are more gems (writing tips) to mine there!

Writing Tip: Writing what you know may be a good way to start writing, especially if you’re scared of rejection or nervous about feedback. But once you establish yourself as a writer – whether you’re published or not – you may want to start challenging yourself. Write about what you don’t know. Wrestle with your ideas, characters, themes, and plots. Write about what scares you, what makes you nervous -- what gets your heart pumping. That's when you know you're writing something of consequence.

This little article called Leaving Your Comfort Zone may help push you out of the nest.

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