Tuesday, September 10, 2013

On Fiction, Briefly

The writer Christel Pond, a talented memoir-essayist (and also my sister for you full-disclosure wonks out there) posted a brief, elegant little essay on the role of fiction in our lives that I feel is worth sharing:
What is it about our favorite shows and novels that tangles us up in the stories of people and places that don't even exist? Is it simply because it is an escape from our own reality? Or is it because for a moment, that fictional character pulled a truth out of us that we cannot express and played it out for the entire world to see, revealing our secrets in their own lives, freeing us, liberating us, if even in an unseen way? Is it that we find a connection with them, a faith among them, our imaginations mingling with their worlds in an almost mirrored way? Are we ourselves with them? Or are we who we wish we were?

These worlds, these people, these stories... none of them are real. But they are our link to forever, to the words we cannot find and the voices we cannot allow to escape. They are our escape from the present, and our push to the future, breathing life into an empty part of ourselves that often goes unseen. Life is tumultuous, but we survive. But their lives... well, their lives are up and down and sideways and inside out and backwards and completely unbelievable. And somehow, despite all they experience and feel and see, they keep going. They are the teachers we look up to. Because if they can do it in their impossible worlds and impossible lives, we can do it... right?

Don't be afraid to lose yourself in a story, in a character, in a view of an alternate reality. It is through this walks of imaginary places we find comfort and strength to forge on in our own realities. These trips down fantasy road gives us a much needed break from our own lives, our own worlds. Whether it be through words on a page or pictures on a screen, these are the epitome of a treasured escape. For a moment, live among them, feel with them, be them. Then close the book, shut off the tv, and tackle your life with the same endless vigor and strength of the make-believe people you have come to admire...
Somewhat related...

The power that fiction has on our lives can be immeasurable, as are the connections to those characters and settings we love. Over at Hooded Utilitarian RM Rhodes questions fans who complain about recent editorial and creative clusterfuckery at the Big Two. The discussion that follows on the comment thread goes into greater depth.  My own thoughts from the thread lean towards embracing both the complainers and those who explain the alternatives, especially those in Direct Market Retail best positioned to guide those wayward sons and daughters. More here.

Finally, apropos of nothing, you can now follow The Comic Pusher on Tumblr, if that's your thing. Check it out at ComicPusher.tumblr.com

No comments:

Post a Comment