"Missed Moorings" Nicholas Lernann, in The Washington Monthly (Feb. 1986), 1711 Connecticut Ave. N.W., Washington, D.C. 20009.
Experience provides the raw material of good fiction. It is no accident that many major American novelists had, at some point in their lives, vocations other than writing. Mark Twain and Herman Melville piloted ships. John Steinbeck worked as a farm hand. Ernest Herningway drove an ambulance during World War I.
But what has happened since World War II? wonders...