Monday, April 12, 2010

Thinking in Stories

I read on another blog recently that once you start writing consistently on a blog the tendency creeps up to start mentally blogging every life situation.  This is true.  I'll make something, or have to deal with absurd customers at the soda fountain, or play a funny game of Spades with Clevi, and all the while I'm figuring out how I would cleverly turn it into a blog post.  Throughout the week Steve responds to my antics with "You should put that on your blog."

I was thinking about this phenomenon of mental blogging, and then it struck me that even before I had the tangible outlet of this blog, I was always thinking in stories - always trying to turn life into some kind of narrative. This probably started at a young age when I got sick of trying to get my paper dolls to keep their clothes on and decided to just make up a mental story about them while they sat there in front of me.  It continued when I was older (okay, maybe too old) and I wandered around the hills behind our house for hours pretending that I was an Irish immigrant, a coal-miner's mail order bride, or a nurse in the Revolutionary War.  Then when I had to be more socially together and do things like get a job, turning work incidents into parts of a novel made the afternoons speed by.

Thankfully, I seem to have married someone who is also able to think in stories.  Florianus, for example, is a lazy daschund who thinks only about eating, sleeping, and barking at the Catholics.  However, our narrative-forming minds have turned him into this complex creature with varied emotions, desires for fame and fortune, and personal preferences that are decidedly German.  Poor dog.  Our Baby's homemade toys are taking on a rather Winnie-the-Pooh life of their own these days, as well.

Thinking in stories helps annoying situations - like when Debbie-the-Crazy-Neighbor comes over and asks for a ride so that she can return an already laundered shirt to the store because "it shrunk."  Or when the ASI people send us a note in which every sentence ends in an exclamation point.  We can always use characters like these for our future books.

Is thinking in stories or mentally blogging merely an introverted act to escape reality?  I don't think so.  I find that it gets my mind off of myself, it engages me in my surroundings in a new way, and it heightens observation and creative thinking.  Besides, the Bible is essentially a narrative.  God thinks in stories, too.


Laura said...

Mmmhmm! The reasons I love blogging so. And miss it. Even though I don't have talents of expressing myself as awesomely as you. :) It was an awesome time with a new 'blog style' outlook on evverything.

Clara H said...

The game of Spades was NOT funny.

BeckyLove said...

I love that you think this way! I'm more simple... I find myself storing up quotes from coworkers, friends, customers... not for a book/story but perhaps a bumper sticker/ song lyric or t shirt logo. we shall see... Thanks for your beautiful, artistic ramblings. I think God gives us creative eyes to better see the qwerky in our lives as positive. Glad he does. <3

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