Last time, I approached the subject of "write what you know" from the perspective of activism. For this post, I want to approach this issue from the perspective of gathering inspiration.
To do that, I'm going to start with a little story.
A few weeks ago, Trevin and I drove six hours to Iowa for a friend's wedding. Despite the awkwardness of meeting new faces and conversing with people who'd been absent for a good amount of time, it was fun. We tried new food and got to watch cable for the first time in at least a year.
Along the way, I learned a few things:
1) Jalepenos provide a perfect balance with tater tots when rapped in bacon and smothered in cheese. This might have become my new favorite junk food.
2) Don't guzzle OJ if you've waited so long to eat that you're feeling jittery. I discovered the body doesn't take to an overflow of food when it's crawling into starvation mode.
3) I'd be fine with living in the suburbs. I've been craving the city life for as long as I can recall, but i discovered living outside the bustle of urban turf and traveling to enjoy its bounty aren't as bad as I'd once thought.
4) Apparently, I have twilight blindness. Bright day and full dark are perfectly fine, but driving at twilight, when the sun hasn't completely left and the headlights come on, is a good way to have an accident.
5) Starers are everywhere. I used to think people only stared when the environment made them feel safe, and thus entitled to do so. I guess hotels are neutral ground.
6) Reuben pizza is a thing. I didn't get to try it, but there's a place in Des Moines that serves a pizza inspired by a reuben sandwich.
But what's the point in all this?
Material is everywhere. It's only a matter of looking around.
Learning is a full time job. Most college students already know this, but it seems once we leave the classroom behind we forget how important acquiring new information can be. This is especially important for creatives. No topic should be considered safe from a curious eye.
The more you know, the larger the pool of resources you can draw from when creating. Thus, learning increases the diversity of your creative potential.
So: Write what you know, and what you don't know, learn.