Saturday, January 20, 2007
Myths and Other Truths
Some fiction is absolutely realistic. It shows the world as it is, shows people, precisely as they are. Ernest Hemingway wanted to write this kind of fiction, and I admire and enjoy his work. I think he often succeeded. But I’m not the same kind of writer. I prefer to write, and usually to read, fiction that taps into myth more than realism. Robert E. Howard wrote myth. The late David Gemmell wrote it. I don’t think that either approach is better than the other. I believe that both of them can reveal truth. Myths just reveal a hidden truth, a truth closer to our inner core.
Despite the fact that fiction is built literally out of lies, truth is its ultimate goal. If you achieve that, you will be read.