Opinion | Opinião


When writing on the hazards of fantasy, I’m referring to the denial of reality and it’s highly harmful consequences, mental illness and genocides included. Religion, extremism, obscurantism and negativism are notorious examples.

The good role of fantasy lies on creativity, imagination, the establishing of goals and the play with both laws of nature and society, either through utopias or contemporary impossibilities, like flying once was, or through the creation of allegedly absurd worlds. These are the fantasies of scientists, engineers, entrepreneurs with vision, some authors and children.

Fiction is, by definition, an expression of fantasy. It is a made up narrative. In each segment of it, an author makes the crucial choice of either obscurantism or vision. Each scene becomes a statement on human nature and it’s up to the author to be false or true.

Most consumers of fiction chose candy, no matter how true or false. They look for catharsis and this is juicier with blunt lies of accomplished desires or sentimental tragedy. It is all about soothing frustrations in the land of bestsellers.

There are exceptions and some of them become classics. In order to become a successful herald of truth through the means of fiction and fantasy, these are the ones to study.

Novels for Writers | Romances para Escritores

CRIME AND PUNISHMENT (Fyodor Dostoevsky)

When I first read Crime and Punishment, Dosto became my best friend. The man was teaching me everything one needs to know to write something worth reading. There are many other friends of equal value, but Dosto took my heart.

If you want to learn how to master the basics of the interior monologue, Crime and Punishment is your manual. Narration, dialogue and interior monologues, or thoughts, are clearly distinguished with exquisite use of punctuation, rhythm and pace. It all becomes natural to the reader, who becomes involved in the all turmoil of emotion while remaining perfectly safe and guarded by the doctrinal narrator, as it happens in the best classics. This was written before the mesh up of voices that branded the modernists (which I adore), and constitutes their base. You could say Dosto is for the modern writer what Bach is for the classic musician, or Beethoven for the romantics.

As for the plot, it is masterly delivered. I’m not revealing a thing. People avoid reading stories when knowing the plot, as if the plot was everything. Let me digress a little to tell you one thing. All plots are already written or told. Plots are just a path to keep things going. The combination and mix of forms you use to tell the events is the construct that mysteriously tickles the reader’s heart. So, you better get yours ready. Dosto is not for cardiacs.

Thursday, 3rd September 2021