The Writer’s World: An Inky Mist?

Does life become more or less meaningful if the world and everyone in it are possible fictional subject matter? Since setting up this blog I’ve been thinking more than ever about this question. As a writer you instinctively go through life looking for inspiration in the world around you. It’s a natural process and one that you don’t get a choice in. Well that’s the way that it is for me anyway. Everyone I meet is a potential character and everything I see could have a place in my fiction.

But am I ever really experiencing anything then? Am I ever really living in the moment or does everything exist for me in writing terms? This is something that worries me sometimes and makes me wonder whether I’m actually living my life or whether I’m merely stocking up ideas to write about in the future. Or by contrast am I looking closer and more critically at the world around me and stopping to smell the flowers as it were?

The other side of this coin is that everyone I meet is the potential for a fictional character. Am I bastardising their image by taking my perception of who they are or taking a trait from their personality and using it for a character? Or am I instead celebrating them by the use of their image? Or is it none of the above and I’m just being ridiculous?

I have posed a lot of questions in this post and don’t really have any answers. I can’t simplify these ideas to a yes/no answer or even say with any conviction that they have an answer. They must be something that all writers must consider with their work. Do we see the world as our muse full of glory and beauty, or our cadaver to be dissected?

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