I had a whole different post planned. With links and stuff. Then I logged in, checked some emails, did the twitter-y thing, followed up on some comments I’d made on other blogs. In doing so I found that somewhere, somehow, someone had taken issue with a true story I related in a blog comment. A story I related as an offer of support to the blog’s author. It seemed pretty mean to both of us.
The person in question apparently clicked on over to my blog, read my “about” page, and came back to comment “I see that you are a writer of fiction. Why should we believe anything you write?”
Wow. I have no idea what side of the bed that person got up on. But her bedroom needs some Feng Shui.
Rather than get upset by the attitude (because, really, what does it matter?) I got inspired by the question.
Why should you believe anything I write?
Let me start with this – my blog, my non-fiction arena. You should believe what I write here because I am a nauseatingly truthful person. I either tell the truth or shut my mouth. I’ve never really understood the point in lying about things. It justs brings drama and heartache at worst, ignorance at best. If we do indeed have inalienable human rights, the right to the truth is one of them in my book. How else can we be responsible and make decisions freely? I don’t get all militant-activist-NSA-conspiracies-freak on the topic. I just tell the truth and expect my family and friends to do the same. And if you don’t, I lose respect for you.
So, more importantly, why should you believe what I write when I am indeed writing fiction?
Glad you asked.
When I write my fiction, I write the truest of truths. The truth of the heart. The truth I see in other people when I get that chance to really SEE them, know them, love them inside and out. That truth you’re lucky to have with half-a-dozen people in your life. My characters show me that truth, and ask me to tell it for them.
When I write fiction, my world, my characters, my situations may not be real like you and I, but they are real in another way. They are Velveteen Rabbit Real – the kind of real you become from being loved deeply. Believe me, every character I write – from sweet to sinister – I love inside and out. Otherwise you’d never believe them.
You should believe what I write, because believing in something is amazing. It sets your mind free, it expands your universe beyond the physical of everyday. It creates whole new universes, rules, games, emotions. It adds to the infinite possibilities of life.
And it feels GOOD. Right? When you read a book and your heart is racing for the character in trouble? When you’re bawling your eyes out at their pain? If you didn’t believe it, you wouldn’t get to feel it. And feeling is awesome. The reward of feeling is well worth the expense of belief.
So, to the mean-spirited person who wanted my story to be called into doubt, I give you my answer. Why should you believe anything I write? Because I write truth – fiction AND nonfiction truth – and because believing is so much greater than not.