Sometimes life floats along like a breeze. You’re barely aware you’re being moved or affected until you take a moment to look around and find you’re not where you started.
Other times, life hits like a tornado. By the time you realize what’s happened, the damage is done. Once you get your feet under you again, you look around and everything you love seems to have been destroyed in a matter of seconds.
When I see friends and family going through the tornadoes of life like a death, job-loss, divorce, or any of the other million things that can go wrong, I have the urge to stop writing my silly stories, because at the end of the day, they are silly. All fiction is. It’s make-believe. Pretending for grown-ups. I had this urge to quit a month ago when people around me were being bombarded left and right. Playing make-believe seemed trivial and stupid. And maybe it still is. But then again…
I remembered when my life falls apart, I often run to a good book to escape, to pretend things aren’t what they seem, to forget even if for only a few hours that the tornado called Life has uprooted everything I love and hold dear. Yet, that’s not the only time I read. I read when I’m happy. I read when I’m bored. I read twice a day when I’m stuck in a massive traffic jam at carpool. I especially read when I’m sick, or one of my kids is, and they want me to sit with them for hours on the couch while they watch the same episode of Dora over and over and over again.
So I will keep writing. Not just for my own sanity, but to hopefully give others a chance to escape, a chance to smile, and a chance to forget their own problems for a few hours.
What about you? Do you ever read to escape? Do you write for the same reason?
PS: I am working on a 100th post about my top 100 favorite things about writing and have two more questions for you today. What is your favorite website for writing tips? Who is your favorite author? You can answer in the comments below and I’ll compile them sometime later this week. And if you missed the previous two questions, check them out here.