Greetings and g’day, dear readers. I’m giddily enthusiastic today to introduce author Ryan Brooks, a friend from Down Under, who is both brilliant and wise. Please enjoy this cogent and insightful guest post by Ryan about what it really means to write and the magical spells we writers cast with every carefully chosen word.
The Importance of Spell Check
By Ryan Brooks
There is something mystic in story-telling.
The act of opening a book and magically being whisked away to another time, place, or dimension is a form of enchantment that most of us have enjoyed at some time or another. We cannot deny the thrill of watching our protagonist make a death-defying leap. We could not be more concerned when our heroine suffers at the hands of a villain. We could not be more heartbroken when their pet dog, Rufus, dies after falling down a well.
Words are powerful tools. When used properly they can give us access to new ideas and concepts that we might not have realized without them. The right words can shift our awareness, steal our focus, or consume our consciousness. Words bridge the gap between that which is and that which isn’t, between the real and unreal. Star Wars might not have existed before George Lucas put pen to paper, but any (worthwhile) nerd on the street will tell you that Jedis are indeed real. How could they not be, since you’re having a conversation about them?
The very concept of ‘casting a spell’ itself stems from the old English ‘spellian’ meaning to tell or speak. When you open your mouth and talk, you are literally making something out of nothing; converting abstract thoughts to physical verbal discourse in an energetic transference that Einstein would balk at mapping.
But, perhaps the most important way that mystical experience can be gifted through story-telling is through significance.
It is the job of an author to pick and choose where the conscious awareness of the reader goes. Though the reader decides how they feel about what the author unveils to them, the author controls the omnipresent camera of narrative focus, lending significance to the ideas and concepts of their choosing. The author must decide what is important and what is not important for the tale to progress appropriately.
It is the serendipitous aspect of stories, the subtle shift that makes the unbelievable believable, that truly speaks to us all. Because even in the most mundane of stories, even in stories about gritty, modern settings, even in historical fiction or crime novels or thrillers… It is the inherent significance of the causal narrative that takes hold of the reader.
And it is the inherent significance of causal existence that takes hold of us as humans.
Thanks so much for sharing your wisdom with us, Ryan!
Ryan is a writer and artist based out of the Central Coast in Australia. He is a regular contributor to the website Warhol’s Children and is currently working on his second novel, “Beneath a Clockwork Sun.”
Ryan has a number of insightful and fascinating articles about cyber-punk culture, sex, politics, and a variety of likewise fascinating and fun bits listed here. Don’t miss them! Learn more about Ryan at his blog and say hi on Twitter.