One of my strugles as a writer is allowing myself the freedom to conceive my writing as myth. As a history major, knowitall, and nerd, I have always fact checked fiction that I consume. This attitude dominates pop culture, too. SciFi needs to smack of physics and quantuk mechanics. Crime drama needs to dabble in science and jurisprudence. Even westerns seemed pressured to move away from "American myth" toward "historical fiction."
I am not objecting exactly but I have come to recognize and appreciate fiction that realizes that it is fiction. When fiction is more than real world stories that happen to have not happend, it is free to revel in symbols, style, tropes, metaphors -- the stuff that may not correspond to real life but often seem to speak more powerfully and readily to we who are prisoners of that real life.
If only I could let myself write with that kind of liberty.
Monday, August 2, 2010
It doesn't Have to be Realistic