Friday, December 13, 2013

Reader vs Author

When we watch a movie or read a book, we are naturally drawn into the fictional world. The days spent poring over the tiny text and the hours sitting in darkness with popcorn in hand can be emotional experiences. The moment we are glued to a character or a world, we know that we would dread the end of it. Once the cinema lights come back on and the book ends with a full stop, a sad feeling settles upon us.

We are never going to go on another adventure, we will never see more of this fictional world, and we will stop learning more about our favourite characters. The hero becomes a long lost friend and the world becomes a vacation we only have pictures of. Honestly, it sucks.

Of course, we can resort to fan fiction to keep the world alive in us. But we all know, fan fiction is a mirage. It’s not the real deal… because we don’t have the say over our favourite characters and their worlds. We are merely the reader/viewer… and we have no right.

On the other hand, if you’re the author of that particular world, the end of your book or film is not the end. You can ALWAYS return to the world and have coffee with your characters. They are never gone. Every now and then, you learn more about your character and explore a back alley of your different worlds. Yes, the story has ended but your relationship with them will never, ever end.

That’s the joy of being an author. You might grow tired of entering the same worlds over and over again, but you will never stop loving it. You are given the key to return and go on a new adventure anytime, because that’s an author’s privilege. The day your creations die is the day you draw your last breath.

I have been on both sides of the coin, hence I have experienced what it is like to live in a world forever and to see one fading away. I like being able to re-enter my creations and talk to my characters even after their story has ended, but I hate losing touch with my favourite characters from my favourite books.

I don’t know about you, but realizing this fact is like being hit with ‘reality’. Anything that ends that is not mine… ends forever. Nothing will bring it back to the start of the line and there is nothing I can do about it. When it’s the end… it really is the end.

This truth is as painful as it can get. And now… I have to live with it. 

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