Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Dream Job

As children we’ve all had ambitions; to be firefighters, astronauts, policemen, etc. My ambition has always been that of a storyteller. It represents in its own way the power of creation. Though, as one finds out later, creation does not necessarily mean control in that if the creator has done his work skillfully, his creation takes on a life of its own. The works of Shakespeare are still being reviewed after roughly four hundred years, his characters changing and growing as time passes. In this way I have always wanted to be the creator, the writer, rather than the creation.

Having been raised within walking distance of the local library I came to know the structure and its contents better than most librarians. The concept that a book, such a small and simple object, contains worlds and vistas which explore the scope of all that is possible astonishes me to this very day. Starting out with children’s books I soon graduated to science fiction and fantasy. I had dabbled in suspense and drama of realist fiction but found it to be too cumbersome and constricting. It’s bad enough that our physical capabilities are limited by the outside world, but should our minds be as well?

Having been exposed to the diverse works of such authors as; Lovecraft, Asimov, Weiss, Pratchett, Homer, And Kerouac I learned to look around me in the wonder of existence. It seemed like looking in the mind of God and understanding His plan. I knew only that to be one of those gifted few would be the highest honor I could hope to achieve.

In my spare time I write up small stories, limericks and rhymes. I even once planned out a fantasy novel, complete with cast of characters, story arc, description of the world around them, economy, and politics of the surrounding regions. Though it has been several years since I began I have only completed half of the rough draft. I’ve found it difficult to think of the fantastical when everyone around them thinks only of the practical. But that’s just the point of the whole situation. Though the practical is what is required to live, the fantastical is what provides us with the reason to live. What is life without drama, emotion, and art? Why would mankind, as a species continue to fight for its survival every day for thousands of years if we didn’t have something greater to think of, something to inspire us, something to look forward to?

For me the written word has always been the highest form of artistic expression. I’d consider myself blessed if I should become one of those benevolent immortals whose work lives on when even his name has been forgotten.

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