Characters…to be or not to be?

May 21, 2010 at 4:43 pm (Musings of a Writer)



Who do I want to write about? Who’s story do I want to tell?

A myriad of people from endless worlds and lives.
There are so many possibilities, so many options, so many paths to choose.

But isn’t that the beauty of writing?

Why do we read? we read to get lost in a world that is not our own. To escape the pangs of “Real Life”. To run from our pain and hide from our sorrow. It is easier for us to forget the strength of our own pain by delving into the mysteries of anothers. A book is where we meet people we may never get a chance to talk to. A place where we take adventures we would never get a chance to experience. In the world of a romance novel we become excited by the hidden desires that are torn from our chest and splayed across the pages. We lust and desire after Alpha-males…Men who are strong and courageous, who would jump in front of a bullet for us and slay a dragon in the hopes he might place a kiss upon our lips and wake us from eternal slumber. And while we read, in those times where the words come to life before our eyes, we are awakened. We are alive. Our passions we seek to hide in the light of day become stripped and revealed upon the pages. And in that world we are never alone. The characters don’t hurt us or leave us. We know we can open the book again and the character we fell in love with will always come back.
In a horror novel we hold our fears in our own hands. We face our fear on our own timing and if it becomes too much to bear we find the power to close the book. Then when we are ready, we can find the strength to face the monster another day and we always win. The monster always remains on the shelf until we desire to face him again.
Fantasy allows us to create that which we believe exists deep within ourselves. To bring forth the stories we heard as children and believe once again. If we want to pick up a wand and conjure a spell, we can. If we want to fall in love with vampires and werewolves we can do so. We can fly with fairies, dance with nymphs, swim with mermaids. No one can say these creatures don’t exist because for us they do. They are there. The page that introduces us to Nemo and his sea-fares is right there within our grasp. If you want to meet Dracula, I can introduce you. We can run and fly and swim and jump and dance even though our legs no longer move.

Books hold great powers amidst there pages. A book has the power to wrench our hearts from our chests. To make tears fall from our eyes when we believed there were no tears left. A book can make us laugh when we thought we would never laugh again. When reading a book, I can become so engrossed in the story that I want to scream for justice or shout in triumph.

And to write…
to know that you hold the pen that writes the words that can cause emotions to stir an icy soul. To have something you produced with your own hands live on long after you are gone. To know people may read the very words you published long after you, yourself are forgotten. Those pieces of you will always remain. Will always be there. The written word has the power to conjure hope and resurface lost memories.

To have the knowledge that you inspired another, that right there is the greatest gift.


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