Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Reality Check

The world I live in is not so simple.  There are rules.  Imagine you're a writer.  You are surrounded my loving people who inspire you.  You observe them doing extraordinary things.  You are so impressed you want to share your life with the whole world.  There's only one problem...your loved ones have no desire to be in the public domain.  What do you do?

I came up with a crazy solution.  This works for me because I'm a little bit on the crazy side.  Here's how I manage to share my life without invading privacy issues at home or work:
  1. Create fictional characters.  Some of my characters in my books may resemble people I know and love, however, they aren't real people. 
  2. Deny. Deny. Deny.  If anyone sees themselves in my characters, I remind them my stories are fiction.  The only character in my novel who is real is Jesus, even though many readers think He is fictional.
  3. Substitute inanimate objects when needed.  I started taking pictures of my soccer ball, my tennis racket and my racket cover when my family refused to appear on Facebook.  These inanimate objects became the life of the party.  Strangers asked me to be in the photographs with my lifeless buddies.  Wilson, Ramona and Bro have their own personalities and they are now featured in the novel I'm penning.
  4. Don't talk about your work in front of others.  Just write.  I live in two worlds -- the real one and the imaginary one.  Keeping them separate keeps the peace.  If a family member reads one of my stories, that's a bonus for me.  If they see themselves in my characters, that's a coincidence.
  5. When others tell you you're crazy, agree with them.  Who wants to argue with a crazy man?  This is simple, yet effective.
It's a good idea to do a reality check every day.  Keep your characters fictional and your life real.  Understand it's okay to be a little bit crazy.  Many Bible stories are based on people who saw things and heard things.  By modern day standards, they're lunatics.  In the old days, they were called prophets.  The label I prefer is, "writer."  And if you want to call me crazy -- I agree.  Your comments are welcome below.


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