Creativity Calls, Writing

The Truth Behind Fiction

“Good writing is like a windowpane.” ~George Orwell


There is a reason that classic literature is still studied today. There is a reason that children beg their parents to read them stories before bedtime. There is a reason that the first time I read The Last Song, by Nicholas Sparks, I cried; and no, it wasn’t a cute girly whimper, I’m talking full-on had a sobbing fit. The reasoning is really quite simple: writing reveals truths that sometimes we can’t bring ourselves to communicate face to face. Something can be learned from every story. I believe that the greatest fiction novels are based on truths and someone’s experiences, which is what makes reading so boundless and relatable.

Due to this thought process, I have composed a list of some experiences that I truly feel will help to develop us as people embracing life, and as writers storing up paint for out next fictional canvas. Some of these are things that have made my own life and writing more rich, others are things I hope to dip my brush into eventually:

  1. It may be cliché, but go outside in the pouring rain. No, I don’t care if you’re single and you can’t reenact a famous movie sequence… do it anyway, trust me it’s worth it. Play, run, scream, dance, jump in a puddle; and don’t think about anything except how truly, blissfully free you are in that very moment! (And yes ladies and gents that does mean your hair will get messed up, but you won’t melt).
  2. Watch the sunrise over a river through the morning fog.
  3. Read outside. Listen to the nature around you…or listen to Norah Jones, both are experiences worth having.
  4. Truly get to know people around you. Listen to their stories, love them for being unique, share yourself with them (there are more pieces to give than we ever let ourselves believe).
  5. Go hiking. That can be interpreted very creatively, people; I understand, not everyone was cut out for the wilderness. Seriously though, choose your path, and walk it with excitement…it could be a hike down memory lane in your aunt’s attic, through a pumpkin patch in the autumn, down a city street that’s off your regular route (I don’t advice this alone at night, of course), or maybe legitimately up a mountain. Whatever it is, try not to spend the whole time taking pictures and let your mind wander instead.
  6. Plan an unplanned adventure. Yes, I realize that’s an oxymoron, and it’s beautiful! Set aside time to just see where your car takes you and don’t forget your notebook.
  7. Choose to help others. Humanity will be a lot more in sync when we all begin to allow ourselves to connect on the level of sacrifice.
  8. Face your fears. Pick one and work on it first, it takes some of the intimidation out of the situation.
  9. The beach…enough said.
  10. Try to cook your favorite dish instead of going to a restaurant… let yourself be okay with things not being exactly like the recipe. And if it doesn’t turn out? Olive Garden will still be there (I’ve been craving OG for quite some time now, so I would completely understand if you skipped the cooking part and went straight there for a mouth-watering experience of Italian goodness).

This is just a list to get us all thinking about ways to really open our eyes to the world around us so that the worlds we create in our fiction can have some real connections to the readers we’re seeking to reach. I’m sure there are experiences you’ve had that have opened up your heart and mind and inspired you to put the pen to the page… please, tell me about them in the comments, right this second, I want to know!

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