Joining the Enemy
“Ever since I was a kid, I’ve really resented that creative writing maxim that you can only write what you know; it seems an empty sort of assertion, or did to me for years,” explains Darnielle. “I may have recently joined the enemy on this though, because I’ve read and heard a lot of stuff written by dudes who’d have you believe they’ve lived pretty hard, and my inner ex-speedfreak’s radar goes, ‘Hold it, no way in hell this dude ever spent a night on the street.’ Or people whose narrators talk about experiencing a whole lifetime of romantic hurt and then you find out these guys are, like, 22. That means this lifetime of romantic ache has lasted eight years, assuming they didn’t get on the dating scene before they’re 14. Eight years? Like the cons on Law and Order say when they get offered a bad bargain: ‘I can do eight years standing on my head.’”
The article is poorly written & based on the romantic & silly notion that Darnielle was somehow a creature of cultivated mystery, but as always the man drops a little truth in his interview.