Sunday, May 17, 2009

I know Nothing

It's true, I know, basically, nothing. I don't even have a large amount knowledge on lots of things. I do know a little about a lot of things and I read a lot, but not about much that will give me enough knowledge about anything in particular. So when I keep hearing, "Write what you know," I'm in a quandary.

Put out the effort? Not on your life. I'm much too old, so I'm going to interpret the admonition this way. I'm going to write what my gut tells me. By that, I mean I'm going to use my life experiences and observations to make the reading experience real. I wonder if that's not what "Write what you know" really means?

I remember what it's like to fall in love. Who doesn't, it's the most amazing, all consuming, feeling in the world.

I know what it feels like to have a broken heart. I don't know about anyone else, but that's a feeling that stayed with me for over . . . ahem . . . never mind.

I remember the thrill of childbirth, the love for a child is a different kind of love, a feeling that goes straight to the soul.

I've been angry in my lifetime. I've even been in such a rage where I actually saw a red curtain shimmer before my eyes.

I know what physical pain feels like. It's a wonder we all grow older.

I've laughed, cried, had sex, vomited, thrown fits, been jealous, hated, been disappointed, proud, dismayed. I've been so frightened, I thought my heart would burst.

The list goes on and on. And what I haven't experienced, I can imagine. I go to movies and watch TV, play video games, watch friends and loved ones.

Well, gee, I guess you could say, "I could write a book on what I know."

Aw ha.


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  1. Heh heh. I had to chuckle at the end, but besides that, this is a good post. I struggle sometimes with this same concept, so don't feel too bad.

  2. Hi Elizabeth,
    Thanks for the post on my blog!
    I loved your post. "Write what you know" is such a loaded statement. Your interpretation resonated with me all the way into my soul. It is precisely what my book is about-what I know-and I am writing is because I know (pardon the pun) that while the specifics of my experiences are unique to some degree the struggles, triumphs and joys, sorrows, etc. are universal to all of us-that is what I know. My sense is that we read books in some sense where we can see ourselves and feel normalized and encouraged. My hope is that is what my book will do and it sounds like that is precisely what you write about too.

  3. i felt this way when i had to write an essay for my college application. Maybe we just have to look at things from a different perspective.. in reality we're all special and have unique life experiences- we're just so ignorant that we cant see it. :)