The world we know is split into two halves.
The first– ourselves; me, myself and I. Looking out at the world, only we know what’s inside our minds at any and every point in time. Indeed, the sense of self in a normal human (less so for a schizophrenic person) is so massively huge that it occupies one entire half of our world. It isn’t a bad thing! This half is fundamental to our everyday functioning and well-being -a degraded or fragmented sense of self leads to medical issues- but I think it’s nice to just remind ourselves that while we take up half our own world… this fact applied universally means we may merely occupy but a fraction of others’ worlds.
Which leads me to the second half- the Outside. We look out of the eyeholes of our masks; everyone else looks in. Things happen, people flow by (some stay), they peer in and we peep back in return, trying to catch a glimpse of their half. Urgently urgently, for the river of life flows on…
Am I…perhaps a quarter of your half yet?
I like to propose, though, that some people can almost transcend this, can put themselves so wholly in another world, in another’s shoes that half-half is enough to produce many wholes. Authors.
We go through life interacting, speech and conversation bouncing ideas from half to half; In and Out and In again. We only manage one side of the interaction, the other uncontrollable, and a complete mystery… till it is not.
What is a novel, then, but a collection of such conversations? A slice of life in all it’s rich brilliance, and vivid colours, captured in words. I think it’s wonderful to think that in each book, every single conversation, every single action and reaction, the double-crossings and triple-betrayings, are crafted by one man. One person who weaves together the tapestry of ten so well, that it could be ten people weaving it on their own. Ten out-of-control people reacting to the one-tenth they can control, pulled together but one who can control it all. With finesse, ingenuity and adroitness.
That’s why I love to read.
That’s why I want to write?