I love this: “If you say your story is fiction, it’s fiction. Period. How much or what part of it is autobiographical is nobody’s business.”
It has never once crossed mind to accuse an author that the fiction story he or she has written is anything but fiction. I’m sure there are some people out in the world today who have or plan to try to do this but I go in faith that the book I’m reading is fiction if it says it is.
As a new fiction writer, I have come to realize that when you write about the characters we’ve dreamed up in our heads we can see parts of ourselves or others that we know in them. No, the character is not a mirror of me or anyone else either living or dead. It does have, however, qualities I might admire or dislike. We go by what we know or dream up or different experiences we’ve had in our lives. Personally, I think it makes life more interesting and in turn making our stories all the better for it.