As I sit around waiting to get well, I find myself pondering issues from the Gaiaverse books…what I call the ‘big thoughts.’ Lately I’ve been focused on thinking about how much do people actually change? What makes them change behaviors? As an individual or as a group or both?
Big events, devastating events, would seem likely to change things depending on the event. Did 9-11 change us a population? In some ways I would say it did, and those ways weren’t great. We are more suspicious than before. We are, some would say, more war-mongering. Or have we not really changed at all?
The shootings at Newton of all the children…this would at first glance appear to be something to change us all profoundly when it comes to gun control. Yet the debates over even something as simple as background checks, makes it clear that even so horrible an event does not change our deep-seated thinking.
I’m not debating terrorism or gun control here, but I am wondering about how it all works in life as opposed to stories. In a good story, there is an arc. A person starts at point A and things happen to him or her, good or bad. These events often change the person in some way, so that by the time he reaches point C at the end of the journey, he is a different, evolved human being/alien/monster.
I realize that I have the freedom as a writer to make changes in my characters’ beliefs and behaviors. But I wonder if we ever make any real changes at all when it comes to actual life.
Medical update: I am getting better. Still can’t do much, or focus for long, but there is big improvement, so yay!