Writing stories is essentially a repeated attempt at trying to understand the impossible, by which I mean people. People are the subject of stories and stories are all about people. But they are a slippery species, prone to catching you out. Layer upon layer and constantly changing.
Sometimes I think it ought to be easier to understand the people I make up, the ones who populate the pages of my stories. After all, they’re my creations, so they can be whatever I want them to be. Easy, surely?
The ironic thing is, no, it’s not any easier to understand your creations, not one bit. You see, at the same time as you are busy dreaming them up and directing their affairs, they persist in trying to take control of matters themselves, twisting and turning in ways you would surely never have dreamed.
Think I’m mad? Then try it for yourself and see what I mean. A character will soon tell you when they want to respond to a given situation in some other way than the one you had in mind.
Anyway, I can’t help thinking that I’m always getting a bit ahead of myself in trying to understand other people when I so barely understand myself. There’s a life-times work in attempting to do that and even then I doubt I’d get to the end and think, yep, I’ve got your number my friend.
Image by Geralt on Pixabay.