(Or, How to Write With Confidence When You’re Not a Subject Matter Expert)
A Distractions & Subtractions post for Rarasaur
Write what you know.
I was probably about ten years old.
Perhaps you can see the dilemma: what ten-year-old actually knows anything?
The only thing I knew was that I wanted to write, I wanted to write the sort of story I liked to read, and that the sort of stories I liked reading concerned matters that were in no way similar to my unremarkable, ten-year-old life.
My now being 34 years old hasn’t really changed this fact.
And yet, “What what you know” remains one of the most fundamental (and incidentally, fundamentally misunderstood) pieces of writing advice out there. It can often paralyze writers with doubt that their work lacks credibility, authenticity, and truth.