Nonfiction Rules; Fiction Drools (Why I Would Rather Allude to True Stories of My Own Life Than to Have to Create Characters and Story Lines)

Why make up a bunch of stuff to write about when the story is just sitting there, waiting to be told?

There are many times in life when I believe it’s important to work on my weaknesses until they become my strengths.  Like with the Rubik’s Cube, for example.  Other times, I just run the other way, knowing that the best option is just to stick with what I know best.  And so is the case with writing fiction; I’m not good at it, I don’t enjoy it, and I have no desire to try.  Seems like too much homework to me.  Granted, I very much admire/envy those who have the talent to write fiction.

I write nonfiction, instead, because it comes so naturally to me.  There’s no need to invent clever, yet deep characters- I already have all the ones I need.

The characters of my writings are usually you (both specifically and generically at the same time), friends, family, heroes, idiots, time, life itself, and myself.  The trickiest part of making this work is how I handle both the first and last subject I just named: you and me.

When I do actually use the word “you”, I try to avoid placing it next to the word “probably” because I don’t truly know anything “you probably” do, think, or are.  All I can do is portray things from my own perspective based on what I do, think, and am.  As for myself as a subject (the narrator and host), I’m careful not to make it obvious what a major role I play in the story.  I will quote French author Gustave Flaubert, “An author in his book must be like God in the universe, present everywhere and visible nowhere.”  It’s not about me; it’s about the story.  But the only way I can set the stage for common ground between “you” and me is by accenting the whole thing with my own life.  Like most album covers for the Steve Miller Band’s records where Steve Miller himself was M.I.A., if my face or image is attached or present, it’s almost better.  Let the art speak for itself.

I also love writing nonfiction because it’s pretty convenient how time can be manipulated; I am able to encompass the past, present, and future all in one.  Typically I start out the post with a story that already happened (past), linking it to who I am today (present day), and end it with how that sets the tone for how things will continue to be (future).

Writing nonfiction allows me to serve as my own psychologist, hopefully entertain others, and in a sense, to have the ability to travel through time.

Dr. Deja Vu: Time Flies (A Deliberate Play on Words)

Flies. Only Mr. Miyagi and Daniel-son have been able to catch them in their hands. As for me, I’ve never been so fortunate. I used to think the fly was just smarter than I was. When really, it has more to do with time travel. The lighter a living being is, the quicker it is able to move and react, and the less gravity has an effect on it. (That explains why an ant can fall from any distance in the air and land safely every time.) Therefore, a fly can process action much quicker than a human can. Technically, time goes by much quicker for a fly.

When I swat my hand at a fly that is two feet away from my face, it would be like me seeing a skyscraper from half a mile away moving towards me at 10 miles per hour while I was driving a Lamborghini. In other words, I could very easily get out of the way in time.

I am intrigued by things like flies that can move so fast that I can’t see trace of their movement. Another example is the human eye. When I focus on the pupil of another person as they are talking, it shifts and moves so quickly that I can’t actually see the movement. I just see the effect of the movement: the new location of the pupil.

If I wave my hand as fast as I can in front of my face, I can still see the “trail” of it moving. Not so with the human eye. Or the movement of a fly.

This is also the case with many small birds. Though it does reveal a premature drive-a-Winnebago-cross-country aspect about me, I love to watch birds. The fact that they don’t walk- they just hop, without a trace of movement. The fact that they can eat a bug so fast that I can’t even seem them do it.

These thoughts and ideas will surely lead to the development and invention of time travel. Society will thank me someday in the future. Or is it really in the future? Maybe it was a long time ago when I helped invented time travel. It’s hard to know anymore…

Constant Time Travel: Is There Such a Thing as “Right Now?”

When waking up from a dream I don’t want to be in, there is that pivotal moment right before my eyes open that I realize how wonderful life is.  Because I return to the comfort of reality.  Not trapped in an eerie sub-world with a grey and pink cloudy sky.

Similarly, I sometimes forget how old I am.  I often hesitate when people ask.  In the milliseconds before I answer, my mind travels through different ages I could be.  The most common:

“Am I seventy-five years old, with most of my life behind me?  Is my body aged and limited by decades of wear and tear?  Have I truly lived my life?  Have I been the giver I need to be?  Or have I lived my life selfishly?”

A millisecond later, the wheel has spun, and the arrow points to “28”.  I say out loud, “I am 28”.  Over a third of my life is finished, but that still leaves two thirds.

Like waking up from a dream, I realize I am still young, and I’m so grateful.  The problem is, despite hearing “hold on to your youth” and “enjoy this while you can” from older adults, especially starting once I graduated high school, I can’t do it.

I can’t appreciate “the now” anymore than I already am and have been.  In fact, I try to hold on to the present too strongly.  And then it becomes the recent past.  So then I’m holding on to the past and the present at the same time.  Almost to a fault.  It’s always been a part of who I am and how I think.

My senior year in high school for our “class prophecy” read aloud at Class Night, the day before graduation, my peers predicted that in 10 years I would still be living in Fort Payne, wishing I was in 1983.

I am a person known for my desire to want to freeze time.  Or ideally travel back to my younger years.  All my classmates were aware that even as a freshly turned 18 year-old, I romanticized about the 1980’s more than is humanly normal.

I feel time is going by too quickly and I’m not even 30 yet.  Like the forced moving screen on certain Super Mario levels, all I can do is keep moving forward.  And like love and money, there will never be enough time.