The question I ask most…

When I’m writing, do I most often wonder what people will think of my opus?  Do I wonder if I’ll sell a crillion copies and end up living in a big house with Nicholas Sparks as my next door neighbor? Do I wonder if Miramax will want to talk movie rights?


All I ever wonder, with every sentence I type sometimes, is…Do I know anything?

Do I even have the right to write?  I’m telling a story about people I don’t hobnob with, about whom I know nothing besides what I read second-hand and then synthesize.  I don’t know any famous people close-up.  I am very flattered that a recent reader posting to one of my entries assumed I was some sort of expert on the subject.

But I am a writer who doesn’t like to write strictly what I know.  That’s boring.  I have had a good day writing when I’ve learned something; I write to try to understand things.  I am not one of those first-time novelists who writes thinly-disguised autobiography–in fact, at one point when I saw a way the story could turn more personal I got frightened, and after some considerations steered away from it.  I know there have been masterpieces produced that way.  But I don’t think it would work for me.  For starters, my life is just about the most boring show on earth.  That’s why I write fiction.

So I go out on a limb and write things I have absolutely no business writing about.  That’s my blessing…and my curse.

(P.S.: Hope y’all had a good holiday.  I wrote (I think) a good scene last night, so I did.)

One response

  1. I think true wisdom is knowing that you don’t know anything.

    Happy New Year, John!


    December 28, 2009 at 7:05 am

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