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December 23, 2012


Replies: 139

on the subject of "write what you know"

raspil Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2012   Writer
do you think it's absurd or do you think it's legit?

for some things, it helps. it helps with realism, but it all depends on what you're writing. for those who are fantasy or sci-fi enthusiasts, for the most part, it doesn't apply 100%.

are there things you can apply research as well as imagination and make them make sense? there are things we don't necessarily know but we can imagine the best we can for the sake of entertainment. with fiction, we make it up. that's the beauty of it. that's why i love it so much. take it and spin it like crazy!

is this where creative license comes in? are there things that should be experienced for maximum effect? should someone write about something they have no idea about? with a good foundation, can we build a temple?

let's talk!

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Devious Comments

GlassPeregrine Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2013
My personal approach to the "write what you know" philosophy is to plant an idea/thought/question/emotion/experience I've personally had into a story. That way, there's always some measure of credibility to it. Other than that, I research the hell out of every other aspect as much as I can to hopefully have something of an idea of what it is I'm writing about.
TheSkaBoss Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
I've always taken this quote to mean that you should thoroughly research things you don't know about before trying to write them. It's a pretty damn good quote that way. Never steered me wrong. :D
raspil Featured By Owner Dec 30, 2012   Writer
there are so many people that are choosing to misinterpret it that it's making me afraid for the whole literate community.

yes, literate. not literature. ;-)
TheSkaBoss Featured By Owner Dec 30, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
saintartaud Featured By Owner Dec 27, 2012  Professional General Artist
I actually agree with it (to an extent), but it took a while to make the idea work for me. 

The tendency of most people is to move straight to direct, personal experience, which is maybe related to how we tend to view writers.  You know, the romantic alcoholics with insane and messy love lives and tortured psyches.  Or the fact that a lot of literature is inspired by personal experience.

But that's only one way of knowing something.  Someone who's studied a buttload on a particular subject has another kind of knowing, one that's just as useful for writing fiction.

I've written about lots of stuff I don't know about directly.  I try to speculate based on what I do know and research when I don't feel like my base of knowledge if up to the task.
ParadigmFallen Featured By Owner Dec 27, 2012  Professional Artist
I write what I know... but it becomes a pain when I don't know something. Then I either have to research it, or I find my own solution around it. The advantages of preferring sci-fi and horror as genres.
carusmm Featured By Owner Dec 26, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Anything one man can imagine, other men can make real. - Jules Verne
raspil Featured By Owner Dec 26, 2012   Writer
Atlantech Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I think for the most part it is legit, but in other cases it's always a good idea to expand your knowledge. There is always something new that you can apply to your writing that may improve it in the long run.
jamberry-song Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Professional General Artist
Let's try this: [link]
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