While awaiting knights in their trusty vans to come and rescue me from the cold water blues – literally – and waiting, and waiting…. Yesterday I spent the day waiting by working on a short story, I think it probably is. It’s still in formative, development stage, but it’s funny and touching. And since I was still slapping down scenes and such, it was easy to jump up and run to the window to ‘let my hair down’ to my rescuers when they came. Okay, not. Since my hair got chopped. Everybody probably knows by now, it’s been HOT around here, and hair is Hot. In more ways than one apparently. And they didn’t come.
So I was eager to see them first thing this morning. And eager and eager. And waiting and waiting. I decided my mind wouldn’t be ‘calm’ enough to work on thrashing around with characters – and thinking about thrashing errant not-showing-up-knights - so I picked up a book I’d checked out from the library on someone’s blog recommendation – so if it’s you, stop and say ‘hey’ – the book, Making a Literary Life, Advice for Writers and Other Dreamers, by Carolyn See, is interesting. Didn’t get it finished before I was Finally rescued and could go luxuriate in a hot shower. I like hot water. Even in Hot summer, I like Hot water. It’s very nice having it. I like it. A Lot.
But back to the book. It was interesting. I didn’t finish it but made it over half way through before the errant knights found their way past trolls or whatever – by that time I didn’t really care what they had to slay to get to my rescue.
One of the interesting comments she makes in the book was just posted about in lovely Lexie’s recent blog post,
about writers, especially beginning writers, are always told to write what you know. Lexie disagrees. Carolyn See disagrees. As do I really. In her book, Carolyn See says “Don’t write what you know, write what you care about.”
I found that interesting. And interesting to mull on.
But I still think I heard it put best like this – Don’t write what you know – write about what you Want to know.
And do the research to get you there.
Sortta similar to what she says. But feels different to me somehow. What do you think?
As she goes into in her book, like most writing students, if we just write about what we know….well, I mean really, who wants to read about sitting around waiting for guys to come bring you a new hot water heater so you can shower. Not all that important or interesting to read about, except to me, and probably the people around me perhaps. I have hot water, I have hot water……
But I’m probably stretching your patience even writing about it here, huh.
So I still like mine best. ;) I don’t remember where / who I picked it up from but it has stuck with me.
So what do you think? Better question – What do you do? Do you write what you know?
Only what you know?