Saturday, September 5

Read Life/Real Life

So let's talk about books.
Obviously, I like books.
I like F.L. Block books. They move me and inspire me and make me want to be and be more.
And there are so many fantasy books I love, too.
The Kushiel's Legacy series by Jacqueline Carey. So much adventure and strength and passion and love. The Sevenwaters books by Juliet Marillier. Softer, but still epic and tragic and romantic and beautiful.
I have a fascination with Stephen King books and I recently fell in love with Horns, by King's son, Joe Hill, which I will absolutely write about later on, not to mention his first amazing book, Heart-Shaped Box (which is awesomely creepy), and N0S4A2; also brilliant.

I am aware, very much, that my obsession with fiction has led to a fairly skewed outlook on life.
Because I crave heart-aching romance and epic adventure and excitement, I'm particularly dulled to [what feels like] the lack-luster truths of reality.

Love is simple and can feel dull after long periods of time.
Pleasurable sex (for me) is rarely ever slow and "romantic."
Friends don't just float into your life then stick around without a lot of work.
Normal, everyday life doesn't feel magical.

At least
not when compared to books.

and I think this is where my version of the Mean Reds comes in.
My depression, which doesn't creep up on me slowly but pounces, throwing a shade over my eyes and a net around my thoughts before I even realize it's coming.
Even the beautiful sunsets and sunrises and skylines just don't... matter
when that shade comes down.
Then the dullness of my
drains me.
Even things I don't think are dull or bad at all, all sink into this pit of the Mean Reds.
I get angry and scared and miserable and desperate.
I get lonely.

It should make me want to run, but it actually freezes me. I curl up and become stagnant and bitter because of it. Because of my lust for a fantasy life I resent my real one. It hurts.

But still we read, right? Still we comb through bookshelves and review blogs and other people's recommendations. Still we search for something new to read, or something good enough to read again.

I've spent long chunks of my life trying to pull myself out of my real-life-induced bitterness, reminding myself that there is no main character in the real world, everyone exists in the same way and no-one is excitedly diving into our adventure (or lack thereof) and that's a really strange thing to do. It's something like the reverse of convincing yourself you're not crazy. Instead, I convince myself that I am crazy-- that I need to let my romanticized expectations go and appreciate what I have.
That's what all the stupid aphorisms say, right? It's not so much... "life is always greener" as... "you will never have grass as green because there's no such thing as that green..."
It's... really depressing just thinking about now...

But how do we fix that?
How do we, as artists, creatives, travelers, and -- most importantly -- readers deal with -- truly deal with -- the world we took to the pages to escape? We all get thrown back into it, after all; that's what growing up is; so how do we consolidate the adventure, passion, and excitement of our fictional retreats into the adult world we have no choice but to navigate?

I'm on a journey to find fiction that doesn't circumvent my enjoyment and understanding of my life but encourages it -- facilitates it.
I want fiction that brings life up and says -- it's okay to be simple! it's okay to be plain! the real world can be interesting to and you aren't missing out!
you don't have to be the main character in the world's story to have your own! Live your boring little life and enjoy and explore and love your life.

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