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Why Tell Stories?

It's been awhile since I've updated my Blog with a story, so how about this: I'll explain why it is that motivates me to write here and, in reminding myself why I should, perhaps I will produce an insightful yarn in itself.

The major change of focus of this Blog was borne of one resounding idea: that I could use it to reintroduce the magic into gaming. As a natural part of the learning process of our minds, we human beings tend to learn to disregard and trivialize the very details of what it is that we enjoyed about games in the first place. Where once we found ourselves excited to take place in an exercise of the imagination where we mentally adventure against fire breathing dragons, we now instead focus on the best way to build a character in order to win the game. When it has become about the destination and not the journey, what has been lost is this: the story.

A frame of mind is an incredibly powerful thing. There have been miserable people who have everything they could want and also happy people who have nothing. From the basis of that observation alone, a major world religion came to be, and science is only now beginning to catch up to this fundamental fact: it is the way we interpret the things in life that make the difference in how we feel about them.

Unfortunately, we do not always have good control over just how we're regarding things. For most of us, it's simpler to judge things, comparing them against our already existing understanding of the universe and sorting them accordingly. That sounds reasonable enough, but the trouble with judging that we basically forfeit the ability to see something for exactly what it is. When you're only comparing things to what you know, then you cannot see something for what it is in itself. Close-mindedness is an extremely slippery slope, most people live there for no deliberate fault of their own, and even the mildly enlightened are not completely free of its influence.

So what of stories, then? We like to hear stories, and that's good, because in stories are another person's perspective. In introducing another perspective in an enjoyable manner, we shake our tendency to judge things by our definition alone. Stories are a valuable tool in shaking our prejudgement. The main advantage of a story is that it's a pleasing way for this to occur.

I've learned another reason why to tell stories, and it is one of self improvement. Perhaps a wise man once said that the quality of one's writing reflects the quality of the individual. Disregarding that some quality individuals no doubt were never given the opportunity to learn literacy, the point is solid in at least one respect: a person of quality undoubtedly has something worth writing. Unfortunately for me, my mediocre writing suggests that I'm a mediocre individual.

However, this belief also carries a grain of hope: In learning how to become a better writer, a course of action that clearly exists and is viable, one can also learn how to improve themselves. Thus, I think it aught to start pushing myself a bit harder to update this Blog more often, not only for the benefit of those who may come to enjoy my writing but also for my own.


Baldrake said…
"Perhaps a wise man once said that the quality of one's writing reflects the quality of the individual."

If you believe this, you need to read Brian Moore's An Answer from Limbo.

Anyway, keep up the writing!
Well, the price is certainly right. I'll check it out, thanks for the book recommendation.

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