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I definitely think each writer has to make their own call on what to include and what not to include. And I doubt there's a writer out there who writes completely outside of their own experience. I think that's almost impossible...when we write, whether we intend it or not, our characters and the things they face reflect our self and our experience to some extent.

Excellent point. As with most everything in life, it's a personal decision and a choice made by looking at the details of what is involved. Do you buy one car over another? Do you turn right or left? Do you add your strange uncle Barry to the story with only minor character changes?

I think no matter what we write, personal elements infiltrate, it's just a question of how closely we relate the events and elements to real life before it irks the source of inspiration. Great take on the subject, Pat.

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