I find it fascinating how a writer can describe a character who has childlike qualities with positive connotations such as having childlike wonder, innocence, openness to the world, creativity, curiosity, etc. You all get the idea. Yet that same character might also be described as childish, immature, or infantile – all very unflattering attributes.
This got me to thinking about creativity and how we beat this out of children, not literally in most cases, but sure enough society ensures that we all march to the same drum beat and pay attention to societal convention. I’d like to make a bold statement and say what the hell is wrong with being childish if you can retain that sense of wonder, openness, and creativity?
This got me to thinking about when I used to work for a hospital that taught a section on creativity and innovation in our new employee orientation. I suggested the song, Flowers Are Red, from the late Harry Chapin, which was an excellent illustration of what I just suggested about societal norms and conventions. Most teachers, like the first one in the song, teach children to only paint flowers in red and green, thus crushing their natural creativity.
We facilitated this exercise where we asked the adults to think of as many ways as possible to reach a luscious piece of fruit at the top of the fifteen foot tree. Adults in general run out of ideas after about ten. Children, on the other hand, can come up with more than one hundred ideas. I find this very sad.
I then started thinking about fiction. Stay with me people…I’m a writer and have a weird stream of consciousness. I’ve heard on occasion a review of fiction, even science fiction, where someone mentions that a part of the book is totally unrealistic. I always scream at my computer screen (that’s where I generally read those reviews) that it’s fiction for God’s sake. I used to scream at the TV in the same way when I heard a politician’s inane sound bite, then I gave up TV for lent. Eventually, I gave up Catholicism for lent. Best lent year ever.
When writers give us fiction, I want that happy ending. I read to escape my conventional, boring, and sometimes disappointing life. I want the unconventional. I want outlandish characters and events. That’s why I read fiction versus non-fiction. I suppose if a reviewer ever says my work is immature or unrealistic, I’m going to celebrate because that means I haven’t lost my creativity. Cheers to all those authors out there that write something just a little bit different.
I’d like to think that my books have an element of that creativity, so I hope you will check them out. Love Forever, Live Forever and Asset Management are both currently for sale and Locked Inside is due for release in December. Links below should help make it easy to purchase!
Here is a link to the first chapter of my new book, Asset Management: First Chapter of Asset Management,. My first novel, Love Forever, Live Forever, is available in both e-book and print format. Links below will get you to all the places you can purchase the book. Keep scrolling down for the links to Asset Management. Thanks for supporting a new writer!!
Here are the links to Asset Management: