I’m writing a 12-year-old girl character who’s very into fashion, which is a challenge for me because I’m not knowledgeable on the topic. In fact, I’m realizing (not for the first time) that I have very deep, very powerful negative feelings about the world of fashion, and by extension those who are interested in and engaged with it. This is not going to help me write my new book; in fact, it’s really not going to help me, you know, be in the world. So here we have our hero Mike, unearthing yet another massive reserve of judgment and bias. I don’t actually know if I’d be doing this if I wasn’t attempting to write this book. So does being a writer automatically make us want to be better people? Probably not, but in this particular instance I think it’s at least helping me TRY, which must count for something.