to write with wonder and wish-fulfillment
One of the first pieces of advice I got as a novice writer (other than that it was an impossible dream which would see me starving in an attic) was that I should write what I know. Usually, this advice came from non-writers; I didn't actually know any real writers until I began meeting them on the internet. But I appreciated even as a teenager with an arthritic typewriter that "write what you know" is unhelpful, especially for those of us who tend towards the fantasy genre, but infact for every writer - mainly because it's misunderstood. Write from your own emotional experiences; write about how you see the world - absolutely, this you must do. But when it comes to the action? Well, obviously we can not know all that we want to write about.
The piece of advice I give myself most often these days (infact, just this afternoon, which is why I'm writing a post about it) is to write what I myself love to read. And I really only know what that will be when I start putting pen to paper and see if delight awakens or not. Sometimes the most amazing ideas fizzle when I try to discover their story. Other times, half a phrase, or the suggestion of an image, kindles an unexpected story that keeps me breathless, typing as I chase the next sentence, the next scene, wondering what will happen, full of hope for the characters and their resolution ... this to me is the joy that is called writing.