The Power of Story

Last night was a pretty solid, good night. J-Rab and I slept like the dead and before that The Glaze and Alfalfa came around for some beer and general shit-talking. Also The Glaze brought me an awesome birthday present and I was pretty blown away.

He didn’t just randomly pick something out, he actually went out there, did a bit of research and tracked down this book called ‘Stealing Fire From The Gods’ (James Bonnet) about both writing novels and screenplays, I even started reading it right after he left and it had a really profound effect on me.



The basic premise of the book is that narrative, or story, drives us. People underestimate its power because they have no idea how our lives are completely governed by story.

In laymen’s terms, we make meaning out of the world around us using language and we communicate that meaning through words, but in order to do so effectively words have to be ordered into coherent sentences that have to be ordered into coherent paragraphs, whether they be on paper or in your head.

For a long, long time now I have thought that if I could just find the right combination of words, put in the right order and delivered through an appropriate medium, I could bring this world to its knees.

There’s a magic in words, it’s palpable and I’ve felt it my entire life. Most of the world takes this magic for granted and use language in its most rudimental form in order to convey simple messages and satiate base desires.

That’s the danger of educating people only up to a certain level and no further. Teach ‘em how to read and write, wear a suit, fulfil a specific function, but no more. Then sit back and watch them muddle through their lives, satisfied with themselves on a level that is so shallow they have to lie to themselves that their lives have any meaning at all.

I see it often, people who carry themselves with this strange kind of indignity, they have a mild distrust of everything around them and absolutely no capacity to experience wonder in any form.

It’s bizarre. People think that growing up and reaching maturity means becoming serious, shutting your imagination down almost completely, closing yourself to new ideas and experiences and getting elbows-deep in the business of manufacturing misery in all its myriad forms.

Well, fuck that. The child is the father of the man, Wordsworth said it.

Just look at children, they understand and are capable of magic. The light in their eyes is the light of the world and their imaginations know no boundaries.



And they LOVE stories. They have an inherent hunger for stories that most parents neglect completely, and as a result those children grow up as half-people, incapable of reaching full self-actualisation and permanently dissatisfied with their lives.

Story has the power to reconnect us with meaning, it’s a mirror that, if held right, can teach us more about ourselves than any psychologist ever could.

I know that my life’s mission is to write something, whether it be a screenplay, a novel, a graphic novel or a TV series, that will live forever in people’s imaginations and in some way make this world a better place.

And so The Glaze’s present was awesome. I plan to have read the entire book before the month is done.

In the meantime, before I go, let it just be noted on record that my girlfriend is psychic.



This morning we were talking about Dimension Data, she asked me what they do and I told her ‘I dunno, they go out there, collect data from different dimensions y’know? Like the Zombie Dimension, the Werewolf Dimension, the Alien Dimension, and you know what they doo with all that data?’

In my head I thought, Stick it in their ears and go blaarararararaghargharghgh.

‘Stick it in their ears and go blaarararararaghargharghgh?’ J-Rab replied hopefully.

‘Hahahahhaha! Fuck babe, NAILED IT!’

And that’s why I love that woman with all my heart and soul.

Have an amazing Friday, read a story, push a kid on a swing, buy a helium balloon and let it go, and remember that this life is the best thing we’ve ever known and it can only get better 🙂



1 Response to “The Power of Story”

  1. November 6, 2009 at 10:14 am

    It’s all about the narrative slick! There’s gotta be a hero and a villain – we’re all looking for that EPICFIERCE moment where we practically jizz in our pants upon the realisation that we’re *alive* and the ruler of our own destinies. Life is short … Play naked!

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A Word From The Kind Folks At Nokia

November 2009
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