ONCE I BEGAN I COULD NOT STOP
I still remember an old comedy routine by stand-up comic, Bobby Slayton. It went something like this:
He and his wife would argue when renting movies and the arguments were usually due to his wife, who wanted to watch something with family, love, etc.… something like Bridges of Madison County. He responded with “Honey, we HAVE love! We HAVE kids! We HAVE a family. We DON’T have PEOPLE LIVING UNDER OUR STAIRS, EATING OTHER PEOPLE!”
His point stuck with me because I realized that, in a way (although I was certainly single at the time I saw the routine) I felt the exact same way. I would write and the things that would slip out onto the paper (yes, paper) were quite far from any known reality.
I wrote about fantastical worlds, adventures, strange creatures, not-quite-humans, and so on. Things that were not real. God knows I’d had enough reality even that early in my life to be done with it. Reality is harsh. Reality is unforgiving. Reality is boring.
What slightly not real thing can I write about today? Honestly, when I sit down and begin brainstorming, that’s one of my first thoughts. Even the drama pieces I have written tend to veer off from true reality. I suppose you could say I have an aversion to it.
Shouldn’t we all?
What is there to “like” about reality? The world is difficult, hateful and close-minded. Good fiction gives us an escape from all that ails us. It takes us away to a different place or a different time or a different world altogether. It makes us happy. It thrills us. Scares us. Shakes us to the core. And, it leaves us with a smile on our face and a wonderful memory in our heart. That memory is usually about the characters in those stories and how they handled those crazy situations the author threw them into for our entertainment. Let us all give a round of applause to those authors who can take us on such amazing rides with only simple words put in a certain order.
My goal…my ambition…is to be one of those authors. I want to give the reader a story they can melt into, latch onto and mourn once it is over.
Watch me. Wish me luck. Join me.