Why tell stories?

Tales of heroes and heroines have since the dawn of our civilization inspired us. Throughout the evolution of humanity, the joy of telling stories has never waned.
In antiquity, it was mythology and its epic tales of superhuman beings.
Today, one can find all kinds of stories. You only need to walk into a bookstores, yes many still do, and find the fiction section. There you'll discover an amazing source of entertainment. That's what I think fiction is above all, a diversion from the stressful lives we all lead. 

We all crave a little inspiration. 

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Fear and self-pity are the same thing.

This poem (which can see when you click on 'Read More') has inspired me since I saw the film 'G.I. Jane' for the first time. Yeah, I know, it's not the type of film one would expect a valuable lesson from. Behind it's macabre story, hides a lesson we should take to heart. 

Especially during the editing process *fear* is a menacing phantom clouding my judgement. Fear of rejection; fear of not meeting deadlines; fear that people won't like my novel; fear that I will disappoint everyone, including myself. Fear is pathetic, really. However, it's necessary to keep us fighting.

I asked Ksenia about how to crowdsource an editor. Her answer disarmed my armour of fear. In her serious, but cynical voice, she told me the truth which I needed to remember. 

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Let's find Inspiration

My inspiration often comes from visual storytelling. When I get an idea for a story, it appears in my mind as an image or a scene. It always begins with an image. Then it continues to evolve into a series of images. 

Music also plays a prominent role. I mostly listen to film soundtracks when I'm writing. This is a genre very much driven by raw emotions. It gives me the perfect sonic background to inspire those deep feelings to come out of me onto the page.  It's all a bit sentimental I confess. Depending on the scene I need to write, I always have a fitting soundtrack to listen to. Music can both inspire something new, while also empower an idea already in my head. 

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Storytime: The touch

Whenever you see 'Storytime' in the title, what follows is what I like to call writing experiments or scenes. They're not part of any larger work, nor are they meant as short stories. 

'We can see it, right in front of us. An alien ship, unknown to us. It's shape very different from everything we've ever seen. Gently moving through the blackness, toward us. White dots in the background, far worlds beyond count. One of them is their home. They travelled far, though what their motive might be is a mystery. No signs of aggression emanate from the smooth and shiny surface of the foreign vessel.' The man spoke with a calm voice. 
He sat at a large wooden table. He wasn't alone, though. They whispered amongst themselves.
'Why are you speaking in present tense now?' Someone asked.
Perplexed by the question, he swallowed. He hadn't notice it.
'Oh I'm sorry. It's just that it left an enduring mark on me.'
'Yes. that's understandable. Well, please continue, in whichever tense you prefer.' 

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A little more on science-fiction...

I love telling stories. I love creating worlds so I can populate them with my vision. In my case, my genre of choice is science-fiction. I can create futuristic scenarios that capture my readers’ imagination, and allow me to present my ideas in an exhilarating fashion. It's quite impossible not to inspire awe with tales set in the far future. Much of it is novel. Much of it is speculation. Still, there’s hope in the future. That’s why I love science-fiction. It's the perfect convergence of escapism and philosophy. 

Strictly speaking stories don't have to be set in the far future to be called science-fiction. In my opinion, a story enters this genre when it explores how an inexplicable phenomenon affects human life. By this I'm not alluding to supernatural happenings, like the apparition of ghost-like figures. Though, these mysteries may be described as supernatural. Like in the recent film Interstellar, the ghost analogy was used throughout the plot. 

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