Tuesday, September 16, 2014


“Having perfected our disguise, we spend our lives searching for someone we don’t fool.”

- Robert Brault

I read this quote is a drastically different context, but as soon as it absorbed into my brain, I started thinking about it in terms of writing.

'cause, y'know, I do nerdy things like that...

So what's my disguise and who am I fooling?

Well, I could easily be flippant, but let's go for serious instead.

It's pretty obvious to say, 'every story I've ever written is a piece of my disguise'.

From that statement, it would be simple to assume that my point is, 'I am not my story, and my story is not me, so don't be fooled into thinking I'm writing myself into the story'.

...but that's not what I think about when I consider the second half of that quote.

The reader is certainly the person I don't want to fool, the one I want to see through the disguise, but it's not 'me', the author, hidden away waiting to be found... it's the heart of the story.

Stories are things you can't hang onto. As soon as they're out there, published or otherwise available for others to enjoy, they absorb a life of their own. They inflate with readers' thoughts, emotions, experiences, past, present and future. Readers can put a face, height, tone of voice, etc. onto the characters. They can read between the lines, or skip right over them and enjoy the obvious. Settings, clothes, all the details that fill a world can be imagined or ignored.

The writer has very little influence on the reader's experience. Whether they'll laugh or cry when a particular character dies. Whether they love the ending, or hate it.

BUT, if you think of a painting or sculpture in a museum, sometimes there's a little placard, or a leaflet of information about the piece -> detailing the intention of the artist, noteworthy experiences, preferences. Personal, political, historical, philosophical... any and all of it.

A glimpse at possible reasons behind the 'why'.

So in a way, my blog(s) would be a similar kind of glimpse, a means for a reader to avoid being fooled.

When I ramble about things like voice or colour, nerd-out over strange tangents, vent about art, laugh about silly research on YouTube, and amusing/enlightening comments from CP's and beta-readers...

...that's me seeking out readers who can't be fooled. Those who can see past the storyline, past the characters, the sentences, format, theme, and see the 'why' behind it all. See the heart of the story, the reason I spend uncountable hours writing, researching, editing, and raging myself insane over proper comma usage.

The reason I'm thinking about this? I got a comment back from someone. Someone who didn't have to say anything, or email me at all. Someone who instantly 'got' what I was trying to do.

...and I thought they were all kinds of awesome for it :)

More than hearing that someone enjoyed a story I'd written, it was far more rewarding to hear that they 'got' the story I'd written.

That's a personal connection far beyond what I was expecting, far beyond what I would allow myself to hope for.

That was someone who was not fooled.

And I, as a writer, am more rich because of it.

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Type me out a line of Shakespeare or a line of nonsense. Dumb-blonde-jokes & Irish jokes will make me laugh myself silly :)