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Fiction in Reality

November 17, 2009
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I just finished ready a short story, an excellent piece of literary fiction that drew me in from the first simple sentence.
(http://www.everydayfiction.com/the-unstoppable-evelyn-mchale-by-jason-stout/)

What struck me about this piece is not how well written it was, but the story was based on an event, as real as the granola I had for breakfast. (http://www.nytimes.com/2006/04/23/nyregion/thecity/23scar.html)

So it got me thinking about the same thing I wrote in my last blog about where we get our stories from. I just submitted a short story to a market and although it’s written as fiction, it is loosely based on personal experience.  I’ve always heard you can’t go wrong if you write about the things you know about.

I don’t know if the market will pick it up, but my test readers have all told me it is one of my best because it is written from the heart rather than the head.  We’ll see.

This story does motivate me to think about expanding where I look for inspiration.  History is full of stories waiting to be told.


Copy from one, it’s plagiarism; copy from two, it’s research.
~ Wilson Mizner

 

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One Comment
  1. November 17, 2009 8:34 pm

    These stories – both the fiction at EDF and the real story of Evelyn McHale – are incredible. The picture of her lovely face, so serene in death, knocks the wind right out of me.

    You’re absolutely right. As writers, we can find amazing inspiration in the lives and deaths that go on around us every day.

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