Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Literary Daydreams

Writing sometimes makes me feel weird.

Scratch that. Perhaps writing makes me weird.

It is a known literary phenomenon that some people, after reading a great character-driven story, will start daydreaming about the characters in the book, putting them in new and different situations. People’s minds will start to wander, and, in essence, these books are literally imagination fuel.

I’ve talked to several people who sheepishly admitted to this, and read about it a few times on the interwebs. I used to think this was a writing side effect of letting one’s ego run amok. Now, I know better.

Fan Fiction, the honest kind, not the creepy sex kind, is a good example. Some people just get high on words and can’t come down, so they write on others intellectually property and share it.

That’s awesome, by the way. Many people pooh-pooh fan fiction. I would love to be in a position to pooh-pooh fan fic off my intellectual property.

But I digress.

This internalization of characters is now driving my writing process. If I don’t think about the main characters like this, this is my mind telling me I’ve boofed it. Boofed, by the way, is a technical term.

In a way, I feel blessed. I have an internal boof sensor. If I’m not daydreaming, the main character isn’t working. As a reader, I’ve also started recognizing I’ll daydream about great literary characters, but simply enjoy a “good” book and move on.

Is this making sense or did I go off the deep end?

Daydreaming, by the way, is the brain acting normal in the absence of problems to solve.

So maybe I’m not so weird after all.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, I feel normal. Not because you're weird, but because I do the exact same thing that you do. I've never been much on fan fic (writing it, not it itself) but I think it's a great thing to take a main character and then start thinking 'I wonder how things would have gone if'... It really gets your mind going.

    I do it with my main characters all the time. Like you, if I don't do it, they're not working for me. Imagination fuel, that's a spamtastic way of putting it!


Join the conversation, add insight, or disagree with us! We welcome your thoughts.

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.