Fiction Forward

What is the appeal of make-believe?

Many who take up the pen do so with the intention of world building, dream making, spinning from whole cloth new and shiny things much like the miller’s daughter spun gold from straw in a certain fairy tale. And some might say the writer pays even more dearly.

Writers of fiction devote themselves to being emmisaries of the land of make-believe who from their experiences, observations, and imaginations create and share worlds unknown but knowable to readers all the same.

But why? So much easier to write non-fiction, to assemble facts and data and then rely on skill with the pen and charm to make it palatable. Non-fiction writers have as much claim to creativity as scribes of fiction, but the blocks with which they play are more laid out before them.

Fiction makes the demand that not only must you populate your works with the mercury quick thoughts and fanciful ideas that fill your head but perversely they must also be made believable.

The appeal may lie in that fact that fiction, when written well, can build a bridege to the land of make believe and make a reader care about things that have never been and can never be. It is an act of pure creation and the appeal in that is an essential and unquenchable quality of humanity.

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