Writers, are a strange breed of people.
Some are peacocks, some are ostriches, some are penguins and yet others our oh-so friendly neighborhood crows.
They find an incessant need to capture anyone and anything in their words. Every incident, every experience, whether their own or someone else’s is grist for their creative factory.
“This is purely a work of fiction. Any resemblance to persons living or dead is purely coincidental.” Really?
Some writers pat themselves on their backs saying “Really”. It’s just a PURE product of their imagination. Yet others pride themselves “Really (wink, wink)”.
In the end, it’s just a matter of discernment – some are subtle, others not so; whether consciously or not is anybody’s guess. You can even say it’s like the debate on Tabula Rasa: Are human beings born as blank slates waiting to be conditioned by life? We can only ponder how it is that a work can be created purely out of a person’s imagination.
But coming back to our observations on writers, there are also those who are clearly proud of their creative caricature skills. I can very honestly say, these are the ones I like best. Isn’t it awesome to find hidden depths and references in a narrative sequence, giving layers of meaning, just waiting to be discovered? And this utterly lovely experience would be lost without context (i.e. from real life).
Take the case of the average potboiler Indian movie. A majority of its entertainment factor relies on such tongue-in-cheek references, possibly from past movies (which we trip over ourselves to identify), be it mannerisms, dialogues or scene settings (especially those that scream DRAMA).
Also a case in point, Samit Basu who’s taken this as the basis of the Gameworld Trilogy of books which is a beautifully written hodgepodge satire of a mishmash of mythological and pop-culture references that will hold a special appeal to the current generation of readers.
For every writer, the next great idea is just around the corner, waiting to be happened upon. This is where I wonder why people are entirely willing, even flattered to be an artist’s muse, to pose for portraits, are proud to be the inspiration for the next great abstract artistic masterpiece (even if they have no clue how to interpret it!) but are extremely reluctant to identify themselves with a writer’s work. Conceit, ego or fear of a honest-to-goodness representation?
Writers are a strange breed of people indeed, and they appropriately provoke strange reactions. But we (or atleast people like me) owe all our entertainment to them.