XXIV -Fiction over Reality
There's a quote in a Finnish video game called "Alan Wake" about fictional stories. It goes something like this;
"There are many different worlds, many competing realities within our heads, fueled by books, television, even barely remembered childhood tales. We have a far greater connection to the fictional characters we know and love than the random people we pass on the street. Our inspirations are spahed by lies, myths and fables." -Alan Wake (a fictional character)
What do stories mean for us..?
Everything is relative to the eye of the beholder. However, it's natural for all of us to be attached to stories, one way or another. Some people use fictional storytelling as a means to escape their mundane lives. Some use it to find inspiration in their own ideas. Everyone's got their own reasons, but the bottom line is that everyone has their own fictional roster to depend on.
For young folks today, video games are a more common form of storytelling than, let's say, television. Excluding me, the whole world seems to enjoy watching movies quite regularly. Many and most musical artists integrate some sort of storytelling into their works, in means of vocals and melodies. Stories can be shared and experienced in an unlimited number of ways. The most popular way of sharing information throughout the ages has and always will be literature. Books and whatnot. And don't get me started with all the stories spread only by verbal communication and theatric forms of entertainment. You know, folklore. Again, the list is endless.
Time to get philosophical. What makes us so drawn to stories? Why am I, for instance, hurting emotionally when I think about a certain deceased fictional character or when a moody love story ended in a "happily ever after"? The two scenarios may sound very different from each other, but they both have one thing in common. The story ended. Sometimes, the ending as an idea can be more compelling in emotion than the scenario itself.
It varies from person to person. The best quote I've discovered to explain this feeling was found on some subreddit thread. I citated the following quote on "Have we met?":
"When a good story ends, it feels like you've lost a good friend."
This raises another mystery: If the feeling of loss is a recurring thing, why do I keep doing it? Simple answer, I'd say. Or rather, let me ask you a parallel question: I'm sure that after holiday travels, you'll feel even just a little bit down because the experience is over? Then why do you go in the first place, if you know that it's going to suck when you have to return? Because you enjoy it. You enjoy the ride and acknowledge the fact that everything comes to an end eventually. You still keep doing it time after time.
(Hello! It's me from the future. I've been pondering this question ever since and would love to add something: If you're going to hurt when the story ends, why do you keep searching for them? Spend some time and you've probably forgotten most of it, anyway. Then why do we keep searching for stories if they're just going to leave us feeling miserable and forgetting it eventually? It's not about the details, but the overall impact that remains; what did you learn? How did it change your life? Never stop searching for great stories.)
That takes us to the next topic. Again, let's use traveling as a metaphor. If you travel to Spain and enjoy it, do you plan to revisit the same country next time you're able to travel? For most people, it's probably the same experience again. I mean sure, you'll visit there eventually, but it's probably not the best idea to just keep coming to the same location everytime. In traveling, it's important to experience the various possibilities and see as much as you can.
When I travel with my family, we usually favor the same diners and activities and seldom try anything new. I've learned to appreciate variety over all.
See where I'm going with this?
..And how do you know when to stop?
It's expected that an audience would anticipate a sequel after going through an engaging tale, because they want to avoid that specific feeling of finality. I mean, if you've been reading something or watching/playing through something for a long time (been there), ending it will leave you with an empty feeling. More or less. I know some people who consciously try to prevent it from happening and quit mid-way, just so there's something to come back to. The remaining ones who aren't willing to accept a "The End" as is, will demand a continuation. The problem is that these people might not even know what they want. I used to be one of those people.
You know the saying, "The sequel is never as good as the original"? Well, most of the time, sequels/prequels and spin-offs are just an attempt to re-catch that same "lightning in a bottle" again and failing (sometimes miserably). Most of the greatest ideas are great because of the time they're presented in. They're something new, something innovative and something interesting! The same idea presented twice will lose some of it's momentum.
A musical artist (or any other artist, for that matter) could have their first hit no sooner than at their tenth release. After that, it's unlikely that the pieces later on will immediately hit the same spark. What I'm saying, is that it's near impossible that you'll become famous on your first try. It's only the extremely rare cases where novice content creators strike gold. They had extreme luck and presented the right ideas at the right time. Naturally, this is what I strive for with Mens'est Artifex.
You shouldn't do it for the cash!
Bottom line is, don't think you need a story to continue if it reached a perfect conclusion. Sure, you'll get profit from milking a franchise because you know people love the series. But, even the cow has it's limits.
From what I've discussed with Teppo and explained the basic ideology and plotline of my visual novel, they asked me what would I do if someday I was offered a contract to create a movie adaptation. My answer has always been a simple dismissive gesture, for the sole reason that it's too easy to ruin a good piece of art by third parties. That's why I've come up with an idea to make a sequel, a prequel or a spin-off completely impossible to fit the canon timeline.
"What if you're offered a million in credit?" Alright, that's a tough one to answer right off the bat. It kind of depends on what my financial situation looks like at the time, but the basic principle is that I don't want money to be a driving force. What purpose money has for me, is freedom. Freedom to do what I want, whenever I want, preferably wherever I want. I can survive on a minimum budget, as long as I can purchase what's necessary for my interests and survival.
The interest for sweeping through stores and flea-markets in order to search for "something interesting" has long left me. That's why I won't be too enthusiastic to travel with you if your favorite hobby is shopping. You shouldn't have to figure out where to spend your money, but think how to conserve it instead.
What's happening to me right now?
(Hello! It's me again. Back when I was still writing on a different platform, I used to have these different series that I obviously ditched. I used to write four different types of updates: Entries, Special Entries, Review Entries and Just a Thought I've Been Having (later changed to Recurring Thoughts). Just a little backstory before going forward.)
The people who's been with me since the beginning (or read this blog thoroughly) might have noticed the changes in this blog's direction. To be honest, even I'm not sure what I expect to come from it. The little greedy devil in me, however, seeks to gain more audience by the day. So I've been trying to find ways to make the stuff I write more appealing to a larger amount of viewers. I'd appreciate any advice out there.
Also, it's a grand milestone for me to write this entry. There's been times when I just want to throw in the towel and go do something else. I'm kind of glad that I haven't though. These things require patience, son!
There's all kinds of things happening in my personal life, but that will have to wait for another entry. I felt bad for a friend who's not in high spirits like me and I keep telling him about the things I've been doing.
I wish to write more, I started putting together musical arrangements on Youtube, I got a new digital piano, I'm switching towns at the end of summer and just after visiting Denmark, I'm going to attempt to bicycle through Finland. (totaling about 1 360 kilometers) On top of all this, a new romantic interest was taking a huge slice off my time. At least things are better than back in January.
Much appreciation for the time spent on this web domain, good choice. Love ya!
"Talk to people, some of the best friendships only last for five minutes." -Someone on Quora
What you should listen to right now to feel me: Monument - Röyksopp
And while you're feeling me, check this out: Alcoholic - Röyksopp
That little something something to go with your day: What Else Is There ? - Röyksopp
Dude, don't be a square.
June 5th, 2018