When my readers ask me what my techniques are to become a writer, one of the things I tell them is this, Get some experience. Do something. Do it often. Get to know it. Your memory will kick in and you will start to have a library of material in your head. This library is what you use as you refine your writing.
Some of the best advice I ever received was this- “Write what you know and you’ll always succeed.”
In this case I have the opportunity to write about a firestorm that has literally destroyed my home town of Paradise, Ca. Although I would rather not write about the hard parts of the death and destruction of these last few days, I find that I do not actually need to write about that aspect of the fire, but the experience.
Part of what a writer can do is alter the topic, change the subject, but keep the memory. Work that memory as it happened or use parts of it in another completely different way. But use the memories. They will be the bread and butter of your writing career. It does not need to be a bad thing or a tragic event like this fire we just went through, Only something that is tangible to you, That memory will honor you and help you you become a better writer.
Thanks for listening.
T.E.Watson FSA scot