There won’t be a dirty joke here. Instead, I want to argue that if you maintain a sensitive area for yourself, where you can let your guard down and be vulnerable, you can go out into the rest of the world with your shields up and weapon ready to do as you please. This can be a physical location or it can be somewhere mental. I won’t tell you mine, but I’ll tell you others’s.
I had no headaches from February 12 until March 28, where I felt flashes of a headache forming, but disregarded those warning signs as victorious measures proclaiming how I had built up immunity until I needed to sleep through an entire day because any movement from shifting my head to spine would cause debilitating pain. It’s March 30 when I’m writing this essay and I’ve sorted out my headaches for at least a few hours now. The solution?
There are certain memories I tend to have of events I’ve never experienced that take place in “The Story.” I’ll imagine scenes from days early on into John and Trishna’s relationship. I might be reminded of these scenes by anything. If I see a digital dresser in a videogame, I might imagine how Trishna’s dad and John built that dresser. These scenes fill my thoughts like memories of going to the city or the beach…
Can we really do whatever we want, or do we limit ourselves based on circumstances? Focusing within the realm of fiction, how much freedom do we truly have in telling stories? If I were to write the tale of John [left] and Trishna [right], comprising a majority segment of “The Story,” exactly as I wanted, would it sell? Would it matter? Is that why we tend to compromise, accept our fates, and don’t challenge ourselves?
Spoilers?: Minor (character brainstorming, perhaps)
WANNA READ A WINDING THOUGHT PIECE ABOUT FICTION AND REALITY? CLICK HERE TO KEEP ON READING!
If my ambitions for “The Story” include comprehensive commentaries on the nature of our reality, how much nuance should go into those commentaries? A thoroughly-built restaurant might evoke patron conversations idly chatting over the fine flatware or reveal restaurateuring price negotiations for finer flatware. The narrative should always guide the focus. It’d waste your time and my effort if Trishna (left) and John (right) only visited Zbigniew’s (center) Teriyaki once. But if they go frequently…?
Spoilers?: Minor (worldbuilding, character development)
WANNA CONSIDER BALANCING WOLRDBUILDING DETAIL BASED ON THE NARRATIVE WEIGHT OF THE LOCATION? CLICK HERE TO KEEP ON READING!
While there’s something to be said for playing life safely, when the opportunity strikes, jump up on life’s stage! Get outside your comfort zone! Even for just a minute. The experience will probably be uncomfortable, you might need to push through fatigue, or embarrass yourself. You might step in spilled beer, get bumped into harmlessly, or get your picture taken. You also might not get the best shot. That’s still better than no shot whatsoever!
A useful idea in overcoming mental anxiety is the mind palace. Let it be a comfortable structure, holding the sum of all of your acquired knowledge, where people may decorate and reside in their own room. These perceptions of people could be close family, good friends, single-serving friends, inspirational figures, imaginary characters, or sworn enemies. You make the house rules and you’re the landlord. Shouldn’t the first rule be forbidding enemies from attempting mental trespassing?
“You’re still here?” People will get under your skin no matter what you do, or how many barriers you put up. They’ll try to find a way to break you down to your core. To manipulate you. They’ll try to break into your mind palace to destroy it. That’s unless you know yourself and have removed false elements of your personality that you can’t completely own. The insecure bits that might leave you feeling vulnerable.
The hardest thing you can do is be yourself. When you forgo your group’s identity, your duty becomes protecting you and yours rather than relying on others. You have to be ready to defend yourself against those who take potshots at your newly solidified identity. Let’s expand from a specific example: about three hundred people have illegitimately attempted to break into this website within the last ten days and you know what? They failed miserably!
When I go to write something, unless it’s technical documentation, I’ll start with a loose plan on what I want to write and improvise the rest. That’s how I drive as well. Detours are cool unless I’m in a hurry, so along with reading more, I’m more actively worldbuilding as I consume content. It’s all about adding to the mind palace collage, after all.