This man has a vision (click on the link below and watch the film clip):
He knows what his project is. He knows what he is after. He is going for it. The breadth of his vision, as well as the beauty of it, and of his work, is dazzling.
I’ve been thinking a lot about Vision over recent days. Wondering what I am really after, what I am trying to achieve. I can’t just be driven by fear anymore.
My fear is that I will die without getting all these pictures out of my head and into the world so that other people can enjoy them as much as I do. I find the inside of my imagination highly entertaining, and I want to share it. Does that sound vain? I don’t know. All I know is that I feel compelled to transmit the pictures in my head.
I watched the film, ‘The Reader’ the other night, based on the magnificent book by Bernhard Schlink. It was wonderful. It stirred up so many complicated and conflicting feelings inside me. It is a true tragedy in the Greek style, a man forced to face the truth about the love of his life, and her part in unspeakable acts. So much love. So much horror. This story is designed to spur debate about the morality of our actions, about good and evil, about the excuses people give, about love and literature and illiteracy and shame. You could call it a romance, but thats only a tiny part of the story. Schlink’s genius is to use romance as the vehicle to consider more difficult moral problems.
After the film had ended, I was getting ready for bed, cleaning my teeth and staring into the mirror, as I mulled over the storm of feelings going on under my ribs. And I realised something.
This is exactly what I want my readers to feel when they finish reading one of my stories.
Complicated emotions. The vast, unquenchable yearning of love. The conflict of being caught in morally complex situations. The struggle for answers. And that iresistable siren call of need that drives us towards one another, even when we understand that pain can be the only result.
Is this too big a vision for someone of my talents? I’m not saying I want to be Dickens, after all. I guess I am aiming higher than that, in a way. These issues seem to me to be at the core of our existence as emotional beings. We struggle with them, just as we struggle with the philosopical questions of why we are here, and whether there is a God. This is what I want to examine with my writing.
So its more than just getting the pictures out of my head and onto the page. It is observing the emotions that make us love, too. Call me a hopeless romantic, but that is what I am interested in, and I think I always have been. I just never really thought consciously about it before.
I know what I’m trying to achieve now. The thought has given me purpose. All I have to do is go out and do it.
Do you have a vision for your creative work? Maybe its worth thinking about.