“Write what you know.”


I once tried to follow this quote like a bible passage. However, as my writing has matured, I’ve found that I’ve strayed away from the quote.

To “Write what you know.” Seems so ideological, but as a creative being it limits you, to the confines of a comfort zone that is meant to be crossed.

If we did stick to what we know, we’d have some pretty boring, and uninspiring books. All of which can be directly linked to a lack of creative inspiration, and a decent imagination. It makes you glad that the imagination has no limitations; except maybe if you put into consideration a person’s level of comfort with subjects that are uncomfortable or different. Those authors who are comfortable with pushing the envelope, and emerging themselves in the uncomfortable; can usually manage to give the reader a powerful reading experience. (That will usually convey a life changing work of literary masterpiece.)

On the flip side, what you know and have experienced in life, if properly conveyed can teach the reader about different cultures, and give them a sense of worldly knowledge that other wise would’ve remained a mysterious, unexplored path.

So, perhaps to use this terminology successfully one must have been through an experience that has changed the way they view society, or on a larger scale the world. An experience of which, they have a very moving and therefore powerful message to convey. A book series that could fall under both sides of the creative spectrum, and the what you know spectrum. Would be the Harry Potter series. Where Rowling uses both a wonderful imagination, and also draws on her mother’s passing, as the backbone theme in the series. That love is a very powerful, magical emotion; which can fuel a greater purpose.

However, when an author can step outside their comfort, and let their creativity run wild. They can create worlds entirely outside the normal realm. Two books that come to mind are Alice in Wonderland and The Lord of the Rings.

Another book that draws from a very dark time in history, but also conveys beautiful, yet tragic messages of love, friendship, acceptance. As well as the importance of books, words, and imagination. Is The Book Thief, a book that lives up to its reviews as a life changing experience.

Writing what you know, is now at least for me, is a balancing act of which should not be taken lightly.

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I’ve had this post/vent on my mind on and off for a few months now. What finally lead me to blog about it is my current excursion into this dating app that I’m trying out.

One of the questionnaires that you have the option to answer is regarding your sexuality. For instance, are you a? Lesbian, bisexual, pan sexual, Gender fluid, demisexual, transgender, etc. This got me thinking, why in the hell are we using so many different labels? For instance the use of pan sexuality, why not just say that your bi, because your are basically attracted to both genders. Or better yet why don’t we just stop using all of these labels? If you’re a man who happens to be attracted to men; why couldn’t you say I prefer the company of men, and just drop the “I’m gay.”

Perhaps it’s because as human beings we cannot resist the urge of defining who we are. Or is it perhaps society? To make this world function properly we must have a name, a word, or a label for every single thing. Or perhaps it’s the fact that Obama’s term is coming to a close and we may very well be subjected to the horror of having a President Trump; who plans on overruling the supreme court’s marriage equality decision. Whatever the reason behind the labeling, I wish that we didn’t have the need for them, because we all are human and I’d like to think that we’ve progressed, minus the fact that we have a life size troll doll running for office.