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Whim & Reality

We don't turn off our brains entirely while watching a movie or reading a book. There's just no way.

Always there is lesson to be subconsciously learned, a message to be conveyed, an experience to be identified with. So, my question then is, your favorite (book or movie) is your favorite... why? Not because of the grandeur, the magic and mystery, not because of the happy ending, or dreamy character. I don't care for those favorites. I'm talking about the real reasons. The real meaning. Why do you have a favorite... on a deeper level?

When I was maybe twelve or thirteen years old, my favorite book was one set in an old English era, full of intrigue, secrets, royalty, battles, and grand quests. Fun, simple, captivating... yes. That is truth, or at least one truth. When I look back on that story now though - from an adult’s perspective - I realize that there were so many notions of deception, strings of decisions made from necessity rather than want. And most of all, there was constant “saving face”. The royals in the book had to live to a level of appearance they didn’t actually exist in. They had to act cordial to people they didn't actually care for, act loving or at least painfully pleasant to a spouse they were in an arranged marriage with, and had to kept an aloof air around servants, even when those servants were ones they trusted and had bonded with. These things went over my kid self’s head. I didn’t notice the emptiness, the sadness, the burden presented to me. I was too wrapped up in the glamour and charm.

Which is precisely the message the author was conveying!

That revelation has stuck with me. For all these years of living and of writing. A good story isn’t just fantastical, it’s relatable. It isn’t just whim, it’s reality... Put in such a manner that we can enjoy, or at least absorb, certain truths that would otherwise be hard to handle.

I love connecting with fans on Instagram and Twitter, I see the value of Goodreads, the enjoyability of Pinterest, the functionality of Facebook, and the usefulness of having a website. Social media is a great tool, and can be a great source of connectivity and communication. It can also, however, be a terrible outlet for anger, a strange disconnect from reality, and utterly and completely isolating. Because people put on appearances on social media just like the royal's did in that book I loved so dearly. People post the good and not the bad, the fancy and the special and the “look at me, I’m doing so well”, not the ordinary day to day life. They don’t post the mornings waking up from nightmares, the nights spent crying, the awkward and the lonely and the painful. My generation's version of putting on airs, looking good simply for the sake of looking good and not because of a true love of life, and self promotion, is killing our humanity. our sincerity. our camaraderie.

I'm ending this blog here because writing all this has made me realize that I haven't reached out - in person, in a heartfelt manner - to my friends and family in a long while. I'm way overdue to listen to my own rants and advice.

Go love someone today. Look them in the eye and tell them they matter, they're beautiful, they're wonderful just the way the are... no filter, no editing, no altering of reality.

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