My friend Sarah and I like to say we only have six topics of conversation:
- Hard work trumps brains
- Our one friend who can’t get his shit together
- Our careers and what we’re working on
- What we’ve eaten and/or plan to eat
- People’s spending habits
- 97% is still an A; ie, we don’t need to be perfect (something I’m confident no one has accused either of us of)
People like to say that every story has been written before so why even write. I don’t know if that’s necessarily true, but I can tell you that Sarah and I are very happy to have these conversations nearly every day; we are delighted to repeat them nearly verbatim. Were Sarah and I to talk about things we think we should be talking about–topics that might impress other people and be more important than the calories in a steak and blue cheese salad at Panera (surprisingly high at 790!)–the talk would be stilted and fake.
Write the story you want to write. Don’t worry that it’s fresh, only that you and your characters are invested.