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Write what you know...

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I just read another story by an author who clearly does not know his subject matter. This particular individual, who apparently got his information out of firearms catalogs, has a preteen kid learning to shoot with a handgun that most experts would have trouble handling and would never buy to begin with because it's not a practical weapon. Even worse, he was being taught by a person who would obviously know better.

For heaven's sakes, if you're going to write, write about things that you know. If you're going to research, do a really good job of it. Consult with people who do know what they're talking about.

As writers, we choose to put our stories out there presumably with the idea that someone will find them pleasant and easy to read. There are a lot of people who know about technical subjects. If you don't, for heaven's sake check with someone who does. There is nothing more distracting in literature - good or bad - than to be reading along and find something that is ridiculously inappropriate.

Yes, I'm a grumpy old man. But I know good writing when I see it and I know distractions when I see them. It's particularly annoying to find them in writing that otherwise IS good.

I won't be reading that author anymore. I want to be entertained, not annoyed.

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