fleshing out the culture

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Fleshing Out the Culture

To write for somebody isn’t the same as writing about them.

To write at somebody’s not the same as writing to them.

And to write about somebody to them is dangerous.

You’re better off writing about Martians invading Venus or about fairies lost on a windy street in Manhattan, their diaphanous sheer silk gowns clinging to their sexy androgynous bodies, worried looks on their faces, too timid to ask directions, terrified of the subway.

Once you get rolling with something like that, people will eat it up from start to finish, because this sure as hell ain’t them, and their dirty little secrets are safe. You’ll be a best-selling author in no time.

This is the formula that makes famous writers, the next best thing to Sunday football, a way to gouge the eyes out of what little hope we have left before the Martians land with their big green heads, lusting after our women. Or maybe not, maybe Martians are into elephants and cows, maybe they’re after our fool’s gold.

It’s risky business, writing fiction in a world like we live in, but someone’s got to do it. Someone’s got to flesh out the culture.

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