Ask Flippy: I Want to Write a Novel, But I’ve Never Fought in the Spanish Civil War or Emotionally Abused a Woman. What Should I Do?

Dear Flippy,

Rescue me from my sea of sorrow! Last week, I wrote some Gilgamesh/Enkidu fanfiction for my experimental creative writing class, and my peer editor said it was “uh, interesting.” I’ve been feeling so inspired, I’d like to try my hand at penning the next great American novel. But I don’t know how! I’ve never done any of the hobbies that dominate all the classics, like fought in the Spanish Civil War or emotionally abused a woman. I’ve never even touched a woman. And, the only time I tried to L.A.R.P. in the park, I knocked myself out by tripping over a tree root in the first minute. My professor keeps saying to write what you know. How can I do that when I don’t know anything?


Writer’s Blocked and Bricked Up

Dear Bricked Up,

Never fear! Many authors who know nothing about women have written pages and pages about them. But if penises are more your speed, stick to those. Many authors have written pages and pages about those, too. Think of it this way: writing is storytelling, which is a lot like acting, which is a lot like lying. And you lie all the time – remember when you told your mom that you didn’t forget to thaw the chicken because you definitely weren’t making your pet hermit crabs kiss? Keep at it, champ. And word to the wise – hermit crabs don’t have lips.

Au revoir,


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