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Tuesday, July 5th, 2011

Time Event
Resident Writing
A story set in a particular place can show how well the writer knows that place. Sometimes, I think it goes to another level, where you don't just realize the writer knows the place really well, but that you're reading something that could only have been written by someone who had lived there. Even if you know nothing else about the writer, you know they've lived in the place where that story is set.

What comes to mind for me is Zodiac by Neal Stephenson. I had no idea Stephenson had ever lived in Boston when I first read it, but it dawned on during the first chaper. Not in a questioning, "huh, did he ever live here?" way, but as fact: "I didn't realize Neal Stephenson had lived in Boston. Huh."

Have you read something that made you realize the writer had lived in the place where it was set?

Any thoughts on what it is about the writing that can make this so evident?

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