I posted a tweet this morning that said: “I think it’s interesting how many people confuse my real life for the fictional worlds I create. I #amwriting. Really it’s all made up.” And I must have touched a feeling or two somewhere because within a couple of hours it had been retweeted and liked and commented on more than any post I’ve made in a couple of months.
Part of the reason behind that post was based on some comments I’ve had from this blog. (not the entire reason mind you) In particular all of the poems I’ve been writing about love and relationships.
I hesitate to say anything, because people like them and I don’t want to discourage anyone from their reasoning behind those “likes” nor do I want to dispel any fantasies that they create … reading should be a place to lose oneself even if only for a moment …
But I somehow feel a disclaimer needs to be added somewhere in the mix.
I write because I read and because I value what being lost in a good story does for us as human beings in this world we live in. I write to create a world others can lose themselves in, if even only for an hour or two. And as a writer I’ve learned to take pieces and parts of life – my life, other people’s lives, life in general – and smush them altogether into the lives of my characters. I’ve lived long enough and had enough experiences in the world that I walk a fine line between experiencing life and viewing it with an eye toward a new character.
My poetry about love, about relationships, my short stories, my novels are absolutely based on reality and they come from the heart … but in the end they are fictional. They are not my life nor the life of anyone else I know.
Yes, I love, I hurt, I cry, I laugh, I dream, I wonder, I hope … and somewhere in the midst of everything I write, you can find me. But like an actor in a play, I am merely another character in the scene. Or, in some ways, I’m not a character at all but rather the props guy behind the scenes fetching water and dry shoes and towels for mopping up the blood.
My presence on social media, my blogs, my twitter accounts, my Facebook page are reflections of my life and work, bits and pieces I share with you. But they aren’t, and never will be, who I am in totality.
I write horror and suspense. Bad things happen and I can write about them because I’ve experienced bad things in my life. I also write love poems, relationship things, because I’ve also experienced love and everything that goes with it. But nothing I write is ever about one experience or person. Life is too universal for that to resonate with anyone. Instead I attempt to create a collective we, like a stack of images superimposed on one another until something identifiable is visible.
It makes me happy to entertain other people, to give my audience something to identify with, to touch their hearts or minds and make them think or feel. That’s why I write.
Just remember, I write fiction.