Sometimes Idioms Are Wrong

There’s an old saying that goes, “write what you know.”

Yeah, right.

As an author, especially an author of fantasy/science fiction, this is the exact opposite of what we should do.  I mean, think about this.  If all of us really wrote what we knew, every book ever written would be about the mundane life of a novelist.  There would be no fiction, at least not any good fiction.

For a fantasy or science fiction writer, the entire point is to write what you don’t know.  It’s to expand your mental horizons and find that thing that no one has ever imagined before, and build a story around it.  It’s to write about things that never could exist.

That would be impossible if we wrote what we knew.  This phrase eliminates creativity and imagination.  It’s quite possibly the dumbest saying I’ve ever heard.

If ever author wrote what they knew, there would be no magic in books, no fantastic creatures, no daring and alien worlds.  There would be nothing to look forward to.

No one would want to read stuff like that.

I know that I certainly would never be published as a fiction writer if I only wrote experiences that stemmed from my everyday life.  I’m too boring for that.  Besides, this is why people write fantasy in the first place: to get away from the everyday world.

Well, that’s about all I had to say on the matter.  This is a really short post for me, so it feel strange wrapping up now, but I know if I say any more I’ll just be repeating myself.  So…

This is the last post I’ll be able to do for a week due to summer camp.  Sorry, but that’s the way things are.

Happy reading!


One thought on “Sometimes Idioms Are Wrong

  1. Pingback: Earthquakes and Experience « Novel Journeys

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