I was driving to work the other day, listening to the radio. I’m a political junkie, so I tend to listen to talk-radio, which sometimes gets stuck on the topic of the day (or month.) Lately it’s been on the never-ending series of Harvey Weinstein-like revelations. It’s not just talk-radio, the mainstream media can’t seem to talk about anything else. Yeah, sure, North Korea launched another missile, but did you hear about what Matt Lauer did?
This group-think happens throughout our culture. Social media is particularly bad about it, because everyone gets a chance to put in their two cents (and they feel obligated to), and you end up with hundreds/thousands/millions of comments in a homogenized pile-on that pretty much say the same thing (and if you go against the chosen narrative or try to change the subject, you’ll be seen as an outsider who doesn’t care about the right things – you are NOT OF THE BODY…
A movie about sharks comes out, and the next thing you know the news is full of shark attacks. The fad of the moment, and the news just can’t stop covering it (I wonder if the sharks were getting ideas and trying to be noticed by doing their version of #metooth?)
Political correctness fosters this, too, whether it’s in a mostly free society like our own, where the oppression is mostly the peer variety, or in truly oppressive regimes. If you can’t speak or hear certain words and ideas, how will they enter your mind? There’s a lack of creativity when your thoughts are corralled in one direction.
As a writer (or anyone else, for that matter – even sharks) what you listen to, what you read affects your own ideas. Like I said, I’m a political junkie – there have been times when I was so obsessed with what was going on nationally, that I listened to and spoke of nothing else – every conversation on any topic was an opportunity to turn it back around to politics. (the same could be said for when I played Fantasy Football, or Dungeons & Dragons, …) You have to be careful not to get stuck in the fad/narrative of the week. Listening to Game of Thrones – everything starts to sound like Roy Dotrice reading George R.R. Martin, and look like Westros in my mind.
Do you really want months of Harvey Weinstein stories interfering with your fiction (or ruling your life)? Branch out – get away from what “everybody’s talking about” and get some variety back into your mind. Don’t let THEM keep you in the box – otherwise, you’re not really meandering.
Next up for ePublication is “Sleep with the Snowmen”, a slightly different kind of Christmas story:
Ask not for whom the bells jingle…
A petty criminal crosses the wrong fat man, and is offered the opportunity to change his path; or, he could just “Sleep with the Snowmen.”
Come on – you know you want to read it! The release date is December 8th (4 days left), but it’s available on preorder now at various sellers, including, but not limited to:
William Mangieri’s writing – including his most recent ePublication “Imperial Purrogative” can be found in many places, including:
• Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/NoTimeToThink
• His Amazon Author page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B008O8CBDY
• Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/william-mangieri?store=book&keyword=william+mangieri
• Createspace (if you prefer physical books): https://www.createspace.com/pub/simplesitesearch.search.do?sitesearch_query=william+mangieri&sitesearch_type=STORE
To CONNECT WITH HIM (and LIKE and FOLLOW), go to
• His site on WordPress: https://williammangieri.wordpress.com
• “William Mangieri’s Writing Page” on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/NoTimeToThink
• His Goodreads author page: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6893616.William_Mangieri
• Or on twitter: @WilliaMangieri