Monday, April 6, 2009

Re: Write What You Know

After reading Clint’s blog, I realized that I had also been fed the “write what you know” line quite a bit. It seemed like logical advice. Who would want to write something they know nothing about? Then I got to thinking—is it possible for anyone to know what dating a vampire is like? I don’t know about you, but I’ve never practiced magic, transformed into a wolf, or seen a ghost. (Corny examples, I know. They were the first things that came to mind) If authors were to write purely about what they know, then our reading selection would be a lot smaller. Many genres of books have content that is impossible for anyone to actually “know” (as far as I know). I think this is when a key term comes into play: imagination. We’ve talked about it a lot during this class, and I think a good imagination makes all the difference. The saying should be “write what you can imagine.” It is because of the excellent imaginations of authors that we are able to have experiences that would be otherwise impossible.

I'm sure the saying isn't supposed to be interpreted literally--afterall, junior and high school teachers always encourage doing research. However, I do think that it can be a little confusing and might lead to students not using their imaginations to the full extent.

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