Writer's Digest: How to Write What You Know - And Then Change the Story

BY: SEJAL BADANI

A popular school of thought in writing is to write what you know. This adage can ignite fear in the most ingenious writer. What if your life story isn’t nearly exciting enough to create an entire novel, let alone hope to sell thousands of copies of it? Having lost my childhood to domestic violence, I hesitated to follow this doctrine for my own reasons. Not only was I unwilling to share my history with the world but I abhorred the thought of filling pages with gratuitous violence. My good friend and editor, Benee, convinced me otherwise. She insisted it was a story I could tell.