An adventure book with fictional characters and imaginary settings can be just as effective as the real thing. Well, it is the real thing in a way. At least the reader must see some plausibility in order to enjoy the story. Gobbledygook won’t get it. Fiction may be inspired by real characters, stories and settings, but when it is presented as fiction, all that doesn’t matter. The reader is looking for something interesting and entertaining.
I seldom, if ever, go out looking for a story. I let the story come to me. There are all sorts of educational, inspirational, and interesting ideas roaming around my subconscious. A person can’t go to school for half of his life without something sticking. I let my subconscious send me a message, an idea or a dream before I begin to put it to paper. I am a very lucky person in that my subconscious works overtime and continuous. I can’t write half the stories that I think about for a variety of reasons. Some authors might, but I have a personal standard that I uphold. I read hundreds of adventure stories as a young student and I try to model my work after some of those old books. Today, anything is acceptable, but way back then, in order for a book to get into the school library it had to be “suitable” by the standards of the day. I dare say, that many of the books in today’s school libraries wouldn’t have been allowed seventy years ago. Yes, I was going to school seventy years ago.
Give me a title and I can write a two-hundred page novel with just that small bit of information. I have no trouble coming up with words that fit together in some fashion or the other and believe it or not, there are a lot of my readers that like what I write. That’s good for me and also for them.
Fiction to be good, has to have a hint of reality, the reader has to put him or herself into the book and they can’t do that very well if there isn’t some connection between the words they read and what they think possible. Or, something they would like to think might be possible.
I run into would-be authors almost every day. Some tell me they have a good idea for a book, but they don’t know how to start it. I find in my case, that would be hard to believe. Give me one word, “pig”, “cavern’ or “orphan” and I can write all day. I don’t try to make the first run through a best seller. As a matter of fact, I have never had a best seller. That doesn’t keep me from trying. But back to the first run. I begin typing with my thoughts before me, but very soon after starting, I let my subconscious do the work. There is so much that wants to get out, I just let it roll. After I finish my manuscript I go over it five or six times and then I am followed by three editors who are merciless in their attacks on my best effort.
You may not have the urge to write, but believe it or not, it is good for a person. It is good therapy, better than watching television and it beats lifting weights all to pieces. That is my way of looking at it you may see it the other way around and that makes it right for both of us. I read a lot of books as a youngster, as a military man and definitely as a college student. I now feel that it is time to let all that I have read, come back out after I have shaped it with my own thoughts. I love writing.
I began by saying that fiction can be effective. In my case, it encouraged me to do better in school. In the case of several of my elderly relatives and high school chums, it is one of the best entertainments they have. Some of my readers are bedridden and to those, I have to give a thousand thanks. They seem to know just how to make me happy by telling me how much reading my books has done for them.
Reading is an enjoyable and relaxing pastime for many. That alone is good for our health. Just about anything we read helps us to become a better reader. Reading might keep a person from going astray or getting into trouble. Is reading effective? You bet it is.
The bridge between fiction and reality is very short and often not complete. The reader makes the difference.
Dr Robert E McGinnis – Published Author for over thirty years. I also have over two-hundred papers like this which can be found with a Google search using my name. Come see me between the pages because what I write is who I am.