The Power of Imagination
By r brassington, Jan 17 2016 03:04PM
In my next book, I will write about what I know, from an experience point at least. For my first, I didn’t. It's set in Chicago, a city I have been to twice, but am no expert on. It isn’t my world, and still it seemed like the perfect place to set the story. Everything will be ordinary to somebody, but that was not my ordinary (thankfully my life is not a psychological thriller). Exploring somewhere new, with characters and events that might not be your everyday experience but has aspects that everyone can relate to, is what I set out to do. Everyone will read something different into the words - the way they see that world. I think that’s why books are better in people’s heads than on the screen - if they’ve read the book first, of course. Nothing can compete with your own imagination. A writer can be as descriptive as they want, but the Joe Petrozzi from my book, The Good Kind of Bad, will be different from every other reader’s Joe. That’s what I like about it.
It's the same as my Chicago - even though I’ve driven around the city in rush hour (in a car with Florida plates so people just thought the horrendous driving was due to being hopelessly lost), it will hopefully conjure up images and senses needed to visualise the city, but will be formed by the reader’s own experiences of where they’ve known, what they’ve seen, their own memories. New York is everywhere you look, even on the other side of the world from the Big Apple, but Chicago is not so formed. I’d chosen the streets where my characters live, the places they go, what they see when they step out the door - and then my friend, living in Chicago, messaged me about the book. She was confused about the streets and hadn’t heard of some of the bars. Yes, some of them are made up. They’re not real. But that doesn’t matter. It’s a fictional Chicago. It’s whatever you want it to be.