Jay Wilburn Guest Post

Life With Words

“Writing What Speaks to You”

by Jay Wilburn

We’re supposed to write what we know. All my stories would be about being a teacher, stocking shelves at a Wal-Mart, cooking at Waffle House, or watching Internet porn. I’d have no alien or zombie stories unless it was about a teacher being abducted or eaten. In most of my teacher stories, the principal ends up dying. I’m sure there is nothing to that though.

To be fair, that advice mainly refers to using what you know to fill out the believable sections of your story to make the extraordinary seem more grounded. It means to not overlook the stuff you do know as good pieces for story. If you live in a small, Southern town, consider writing your hardboiled crime novel set there instead of a more traditional city setting you’ve never visited. If you don’t know anything about police procedure…

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