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Monday, July 11, 2011

The Truth is Stranger Than Fiction

The difference between fiction and reality? Fiction has to make sense. - Tom Clancy

More than once I've been told by an editor that no one would believe something I'd written had happened. The funniest thing about that comment is that, without exception, it's been on a situation I pulled from my life.

In "The Christmas Curse" I have a woman who has terrible things happen to her at Christmas with great regularity, one of which happened when she was just starting to mature: she got a training bra in her Christmas stocking, and opened it in front of her father and brothers.

Yeah... that really happened. I was mortified.

I was told that no one would believe an older woman (by "older" I mean mid-twenties) was still a virgin. I happen to know THREE women who are now in their late forties, who are not nuns, are not gay and are still virgins.

Most recently there was a significant number of frustrating misfortunes in my life -- to the point where I just sat around and waited for them to happen. And as they happened I said to myself, "If I wrote this in a story, no one would believe it."

Sometimes the adage "write what you know" may not be the best advice, because clearly what *I* know and experience isn't always believeable.

What are some things that you've experienced that no one would believe if they read it in a book?

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  1. Before my brother passed away last November, he was cured not once but twice of the deadly small cell lung cancer. The Doctors didn't believe he beat the odds twice let alone once. We got six extra years when he should have passed on then. I find many things a lot stranger than fiction so what you wrote about is not unbelievable to me. And I do write them in stories. Life is definitely stranger than fiction. Hope all gets better and stays that way for you!

  2. All the $%&# medical issues I've had over the past two years...too many hospital stays, surgeries, complications.
    Who'd believe it all or want to read about it? If I wrote all this in a book for a heroine, no one would finish reading the story. They'd consider it unbelievable.
    Example: Going in for day surgery to fix 2 hernias...and ending up with 6 hernias, major surgery, and 4-hospital stay. Far-fetched?
    As said before, life is definitely stranger than fiction. Who could make up all this?
    Just go along with your life and think, "It will get better!"

  3. But, Marianne Stephens . . . you could use some of it in one novel and some more in another and so on until you're done! LOL. Actually . . . Three of my best friends are like you, surgery after surgery. They say they shouldn't have turned 50 but it could always be worse. So far I've been very fortunate and had only 3 surgeries my entire 60 years. Now I better shut my trap before I jinx myself!

  4. Thanks, ladies! I suppose it's true that, while real life can be crazy and strange, fiction has to make sense, right? Marianne S. I hope you've seen the end of your surgeries!

  5. When I first began blogging, I got disappointed if only one or two comments were posted, but now I don't see it as a competition anymore. I post what I want, and if I really want people to read it, then I promo that article a little more. I created a blog just for venting and people STILL found it w/o any 'publicity' from me. So now I just relax and enjoy talking to myself and those who choose to comment:)

  6. "If you create it, they will come..."


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