Creating the good life

It is not secret that writers are an introverted lot. We’re likely to be quiet and observe the world around us more than interact with it. We’re usually perfectly happy at home with our computers for days. Maybe I’m just speaking for myself.

And I have a theory that this is one of the reasons that we write. It’s certainly a reason that we read — to get away from the quietude of our own minds and see something other than every-day life. When we write, not only do we put into practice everything we learned from the books we read, we also create the interesting life that we’re all too practical to want to really live.

Everyone has the potential to make a plot. There isn’t a single person I know who has truly never asked, “What if…?” Some people see this as a cause for action, as in, “What if those people were no longer oppressed and poor?” Some just see it as distant, unobtainable dreams that aren’t really worth wasting time on.

Some of us see them as other worlds.

Now, I am not easily bored. I learned at a young age to amuse myself when there wasn’t any external amusement, which is one of the reasons I read. It’s easy to carry a paperback in your purse just in case. But more than that, my mother trained me out of being bored (“Mom, we’re BORED” “Oh, well, then why don’t you clean your rooms? Or, ooh, you could do the dishes for me!”). So when I fear that my mind is starting to stall out, I find something else to occupy it, even if it’s just a solitaire game.

One of my constant amusements, though, will always be the voices, the people, the worlds, in my head. I take this as a treasure beyond all other treasures. With these people and places, I can travel with no propulsion to amazing places and play with things like physics and magic. Certainly beyond my own back yard and ‘normal’ life.

So whenever I feel like work is ‘boring’ or pulling me too deeply into a ‘normal’ life, I turn to my trusty old imagination. Sometimes I turn to the imagination of others, (I just finished “The Lost Gate” by Orson Scott Card… Brilliant), but if I’m not in a place to delve into a book, I can always delve into my mind.

“And let me tell you on that crimson day when we see the earth a sheet of flame
I will simply climb once more aboard my mind, and I’d advise you all to do the same!”
— Space Oddity by Kathryn Morski


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