Writing What You Know

Greg Herren explains “Writing What You Know” at #MotiveMeansOpportunity


By Greg Herren

My first creative writing class in college was a disaster.

It was also the first time in my life I was given the seminal writing advice “write what you know.” (I got a C in the course, and I often tell this story in interviews; my instructor called me into his office after I turned in my first short story and told me I would never be a writer, but as an English major he would have me a C rather than the F I deserved. Over thirty novels and fifty short stories later, I find that amusing now. Back then, it was horrific.)

This is one of the standard tropes from every single creative writing class, every book on writing, and I seriously wish I had a dollar for every time I’ve heard it, seen it, read it, or have actually said it.

It took many…

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