Is it only about “writing what you know?”

Interesting interview with Franklin Leonard, founder of the Blacklist.

For those wondering if it’s okay to write something that isn’t their experience:

“We’re at a time in our culture when the project of writing characters who are not like you is held up to really high scrutiny.

“The cliché is to write what you know, right? I think that should be amended to “write what you’ve rigorously researched.” I’m never going to begrudge a writer the opportunity to write and create a story however they so choose. At the same time, I think it’s important to recognize that television and film are a high-resource art form and that they are also a business. I don’t believe that a white man can’t write about a black woman, or a black woman can’t write about an Asian man, but I think that the people who are doing that have an extraordinary responsibility to make sure that those stories are being presented in as authentic a light as possible. You have to do research, and that should really be the burden that artists carry: to do it right, not to not do it.”

What do you think?

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