Characters and the Crystallized Story

9 January 2023

The definite pattern of a story that never changes yet affects us deeply.

Art is a funny thing — it’s a difficult thing. What captivates me about good stories (and I think many others) is the care that is taken in developing its characters. Sometimes it feels visceral, it feels real, like you’re not watching an actor but another person’s life play out before you, feeling what they are feeling, and I think that this too is why it’s easy to get dangerously tricked into treating these stories, these people, as actually real. And when these stories begin to feel real, like you’ve taken part in them, when you remind yourself that it’s not real, what’s real seems painfully boring, and you want to step back into that world. But these stories, these people, for them to be so moving and real, had to come from a man who himself was deeply moved by something real — that something that we all desire deep down, not just to be happy, but to know love. So this man, the artist, took the pen and crystallized the moving of his heart into a story filled with people, a world that you can peer into its glass and see and it never changes. And in this world you begin to feel something that you want to feel, and you think to yourself that you ought to feel in the real world with people, yet it eludes you.

So you return to the story to feel once again, but the light in the glassy crystal that so clearly projects itself quickly dims as its story draws to a close and its world fades from view — never to know of what happens before, or what happens after. Then, the painful reminder that it’s all just fragile glass.