This week for Sensate Saturday I’m covering a topic I’ve been pondering for a long time. It’s all about Emotions and Stories.
What do I mean Emotions and Stories: Well it’s the personal belief that I hold that any story that can make me feel something intense* is a good story. Longtime readers will know that I don’t use a scoring system unless I’m required to do so like on my Game Reviews for GiN. Even then, I still prefer not to make them, and I often forget that I need to add them. My editor has often had to remind me to include my scores in the review. I don’t generally give something my time unless I view it as a decent story, or I’m trying something out. I’ll be blunt if I feel it’s lacking, and sometimes brutally so, but I don’t think any story is particularly bad even if it has parts I don’t like because they make me feel sorrowful. Mistborn is one of my favorite series of all time, but I can’t stand reading or listening to the books past a certain point because it just makes me too sad knowing the outcome of the story.
Alright so that’s great and all, but so what?: Well it’s why I write the way I do, I won’t take away the feeling that a story can evoke in you as a consumer by spoiling something. It’s also why after reading a good story I always feel very slightly differently afterwards. A character might be incredibly brutal, but does so in order to protect his friends and family, a thought that until I read a story where the main character is just such a character I would’ve felt would be inherently wrong or evil. But after reading that story I was able to understand somethings about why we as Humans sometimes act the way we do. Not every story is able to make such a clear “lesson” for me, but I know I’m influenced heavily by all stories I consume. A story where a character I have known throughout the entire story suddenly and unexpectedly dying might hit me pretty hard emotionally and I might be out of it for a few hours afterwards.
Personally I don’t know if other people get so emotionally invested and feel such intense feelings like I do, but for me it’s a side effect of being such a story fanatic and lover. I’ve always preferred a good story to the point that I used sit around the elders when I was visiting my Father and going to a friend of his, someone I might have met once in passing, for a meal. Even when I was much younger I would sit around the table to listen to stories rather than go play with any kids around my age. For me a story was much more interesting than any sort of playtime I could’ve had with fellow kids. Was it mentally healthy for me to grow up like that? I don’t know, I’m not a psychologist. I just consume stories and write about my thoughts about those stories.
That’s it for this week’s Sensate Saturday! Thanks for reading my ramble, I promise to get back to a more routine topic next week! Any comments or thoughts are definitely welcome below!
1: My only exception to the rule is disgust in the story as a whole, not any particular part. Twilight is such an exception and for many, many reasons.