Monday, May 24, 2010

Bringing Order Out Of Chaos

Google is coming to television soon. They think they've found a niche in need of filling, a service that will help you organize your life, or your TV viewing at a minimum.

Watching television is too chaotic. Too hard to find what you want to see. With a Google equipped TV, you can find your favorite show, find out what time it's on, watch episodes, and even order the previous two seasons on DVD via Amazon.

Somehow, it doesn't sound like the sort of ordering system that I need.

If I want to bring order out of the chaos that is everyday living, I can pick up a pen and write a story. From the corners of my imagination I can sweep away the frustrations of dealing with the general public, the state of the economy, or the decline of civlization.

That's the beauty of writing. It's the reason, I believe, that I'm addicted to the activity.

I can control the outcome of an imaginary scenario because it's mine to direct. The ending can be happy, it can be tragic, it can be left hanging.

Life is chaotic. Event don't go as planned, alternate strategies must be crafted with a minimum of thought. When I write, however, I can pursue the plot line that I've imagined and proceed towards the conclusion, with the characters experiencing set-backs or bumping up against roadblocks. As the author, I'm god-like, knowing the solution to the problem ahead of time, able to steer towards a resolution that arrives intact.

What I can't control is the publishing world. I can't force a literary agent to fall in love with my manuscript. I can't terrorize a publisher with an offer they can't refuse, and then see my writing in the window of the book shop.

When any of us write, we exert control over a corner of our world and bring order out of chaos. Don't need a television equipped with a Google search function for that. And we certainly don't need a large-screen image of the latest rejection letter broadcast into our living rooms, with Google's plan to turn every TV set into a computer monitor.

Getting rejected on the small screen of a Blackberry is more than enough, thanks just the same. I don't need all that much order in my life, really. Just a quiet place and a few minutes to create literary order out of the chaos of reality is enough control to see me through the day.

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