I often find myself thinking about the movie Little Women. I saw the version starring Winona Ryder in the theatre. Loved it. That was actually my introduction to the story. I hadn't read it as a child, but as an adult, I certainly appreciated it. I had a good friend who had a literary crush on Professor Bhaer. We squealed through the movie together, sobbing at all the appropriate moments. It was wonderful.
As a writer, I replay the scene in my head after Jo has presented Friedrich with her manuscript. He is kind with his disapproval, and he tells her to "write what you know."
Oh, good grief. I'm in trouble!
If I wrote what I knew...sure, I'd have some humorous stories of my children's antics, but that's what Facebook is for! I admire the writers who can take their everyday experiences and whip them into a New York Times Bestseller. But that's not me. That's not where my passion lies.
This morning, I got to thinking about this "write what you know" directive. I don't know about space travel and foreign worlds. I've barely been out of this country! I don't know how spacecrafts work. I could list the "I don't know" stuff all day, but you get the point. But the more and more I thought about it, the more and more I realized...I do know. I'm well versed in all things Star Trek and Star Wars. I could recite Firefly episodes to you. I've driven through crazy snow storms and pretended I was entering hyperspace. (Even quoted Rick Moranis in Spaceballs - "Ridiculous speed!")
I know sci-fi. And I know what I like.
So that's my justification, Professor Bhaer. I write what I love. I love those characters full of honor and truth. I love those worlds, strange and mysterious. I love the scope of imagination and that my God created me in His likeness...to create! And if a reader enjoys escaping with me on these fantastic voyages, all the merrier am I.
If we all wrote just what we know...I think we'd lose out on many amazing stories.
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Award-winning sci-fi author * Christ follower, wife, and mom * broadcast content producer. And yes, I am a real duchess. http://amzn.to/2eLTlH3