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Monday 25 April 2011

Emotional Connect

On Saturday night I watched the new Doctor Who episode (don't worry - no spoilers here).  I am a great fan of Doctor Who and am increasingly loving Matt Smith.  But today I'm not going to write about him (no matter how yummy he is).  I want to write about the fact that I was scared.

Yes, you read that right.  Saturday's episode seriously scared me.  And for once it wasn't the premise (like with 'The Empty Child'), it was the alien itself.  Now, I consider myself to be the same as most of the population - jaded and cynical with a strong stomach.  I am not really bothered by blood, guts and gore.  Usually if something freaks me out it is the psychological element that gets to me (like Davros).  But on Saturday, the visual of the alien physically turned my stomach.  I only slept because I was so tired (though when I woke up in the middle of the night I couldn't get back to sleep easily due to its face haunting me).  As far as I know I didn't have nightmares, though I'm expecting them any day now.  The truth is - the alien scared me.  Not the idea of the alien.  Not even the fact of what it could do (though that was a little creepy - I'm not going to say more as that would be spoiling it).  But the aliens face.

I have been scared by Doctor Who exactly twice - the two times I mention above.  And the thing is I thought I couldn't get scared, like I said, I'm jaded. And even if I did I was sure I would never admit it.  Yet I'm admitting it here and now.  Because I realised something. 

I am glad I was scared.

I am glad that there is that bit of human left in me that made me scared.  It is a valid emotion and so I'm not afraid to say that it scared me.  If anything, it just proves how amazing the Doctor Who team are.  And I hope one day that my writing will bring out a base emotion in someone else.  Not necessarily fear, but something.  That is my aim.  I want to touch people with my work.  I want them to remember it.  I want them to think about it when they should be sleeping.  I want my work to matter. 

I actually didn't realise the last few things until I wrote them here.  I want my work to matter.  So from now on, that's what I'm aiming for.  I am aiming to appeal to just one person emotionally. If I can do that, I think I'll be content (though I'm sure I would find a new goal to reach).  What about you?  Why do you do what you do?  Why do you write/draw/whatever it is you do?


February Grace said...

A beautiful post- though I hope the nightmares never come. It creeped me out too 9though I admit I'm easily scared I generally watch Who through two fingers slightly parted...) I hope you can put it out of your mind, but hold on to the lesson.

You have hit upon, in what you said at the end, exactly what it means to me to be an artist, and a writer.

I didn't even realize I was the former until someone called me that last year- and it's still a title I have trouble applying to myself as I don't feel I've particularly earned it no matter how many people call me by it (though I have seen the reactions people have had to some of my works and it meant the world to me.) But when I paint, my goal is to make the person viewing it feel something- to me otherwise there's no point.

With words, it's always been about reaching one mind, one heart, and staying with them. When people have told me they remembered stories I'd written later- thought about them, about the characters, there is nothing that can compare to that. Even if I never get it on a 'huge' scale (i think the 'big machine' would eat me alive) it's the reason I write- to, as you said, connect. I, like you, want them to think about it when they should be sleeping (that was absolutely poetic, by the way. Beautiful.)

This post connected with me, and really touched my heart. Thank you for it, and keep on writing.


(who has to admit she still misses David Tennant.)

Unknown said...

Thank you Bru for your thoughtful comment, I really appreciated it.

(I thought I would miss David Tennant but when I'm watching Matt Smith I somehow manage to forget about him!)