Enter My Creative Universe

I first heard the term “escapism” while in college studying the evolution of the movies in the 1930’s. It was used to describe what the movies had become during that difficult time in our history: a way to escape reality for a while and steep oneself completely in another world. Whether that would was completely fantastical or curiously normal, the point was that it wasn’t your life, it was someone else’s.

For some reason, that term stuck with me, and I began to see my deep love affair with reading (which led of course to relationships with places like Amazon, Half-Price books, and of course the library) as my primary way of escaping from everyday life. But then I realized that I had an even more frequently used “escape,” and this was the creative universe that lived inside my head.

In my creative universe there collected all books, movies, music, history, and life experience I gathered throughout the day; and here is where they melded and twisted around until it became a world wholly my own. I think every writer has one; calling it an “imagination” almost seems too childish a term, making one think of pink rabbits and tea parties (although these can certainly be there). This is my primary “escape,” a place where my mind spends most of its idle time, almost like my brain’s screensaver.

Different writers have different ways of processing this “creative universe” from the place in the mind, where it reels a lot like a never-ending movie, to the finished product on paper which other people read. That creative process – from mind to paper – is the most difficult part of the whole experience, separating the writers from the people who “have a great idea.” The creative universe influences what you write, whether it be science fiction, historic fiction, or what-have-you. Conversely, you influence what you place in your creative universe. I’m sure you’ve heard the term “you are what you eat;” it is also true to say (of writers at least) “you are what you read.” The books you read, movies you watch, music you listen to, and everything else determines what you put in your universe. Not to say that those who read a lot of thrillers will turn around and become serial killers! But you’ll find different writers influence your writing style, and that music can influence your pacing (listening to action-like music helps me write action scenes, etc.). I suppose that you can say that writing (at least in my case) is a profound expression of Self.

I cannot express how happy it makes me to take pieces of my creative universe and share it with others. I suppose all craftsmen feel the same when they put their art out on display; proud, a little nervous, and happy that they were able to pull something out of themselves and display it in a tangible form to others. Writing is my craft, and I could go on merrily about this subject until the battery of my laptop died.

If this didn’t bore you more than a standard screensaver, please visit again as I continue to soliloquize about my creative universe, and how I get it to paper.

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Laurie
    Feb 01, 2011 @ 03:52:44

    Your comment, “you are what you read” makes sense. I’ve never thought of it that way, I found it very true, at least for me. Though, knowing what you read, I’m not sure why you created the universe you did with your published works. Then again….


    • Jennifer Mandelas
      Feb 02, 2011 @ 00:58:44

      It’s amazing how you interpret what you read. Everyone’s minds work differently, so even reading the same books won’t make each person’s mental picture the same, or elicit the same emotions. The mind is so mysterious!


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