Tuesday, March 02, 2010

A Discussion on Theme

Hello Reader.  I apologize for being late with the post.  I've been sick, so my life has slowed down quite a bit.  Anyways, I've never done this before so bear with me.  I've been thinking a lot about the themes and ideas I've been instilling in my novel.  And I haven't been wondering if it was the right thing to do, as is usually the case.  No, I've been wondering why I obsess over these themes.

It's strange not knowing a part of yourself.  Especially a part of yourself that's been festering within for as long as you can remember.  I honestly cannot think of a time when the Magna Beast's battle with destiny was not on my mind.  As a child, I had it in simpler terms.  Can Briok really be controlled or not?  As I've grown, the ideas have morphed and shades of darkness have been added to the canvas.  The overall portrait I've created in my mind is filled with bright patches clouded in swaths of rabid shadow.

Back to my point, I wanted to know why I am so obsessed with this concept of battling destiny.  And I'm not talking about Luke Skywalker fighting the inward pull to become his father.  Briok fights that, but that isn't his test.  I want this character to pit his grandiose personality against the very tides of fate itself.  I want him to break apart convention and become something wholly new, an abrasion on the surface of reality that cannot easily be forgotten. 

Does any of that make sense?  Let me put it this way.  Every step that Briok takes is determined to a certain degree.  But there are certain points in his life where he makes a decision, and those consequences are his to understand and bear.  It's akin to the plight of the Winchester Brothers on the TV show Supernatural.  Both seem to be constantly chained over and over again by the manacles of fate.  But there are points in their stories where they are in absolute control of who they are and what they do.  Briok's plight is similar.

So why am I in love with this concept?  Does it even sound good?  Does it even sound relevant?  Maybe it's due to how I've grown up for the past ten years.  The society around me expects certain things because of what I look like, because of my religion.  And I've carried a burden since I was 14 trying to prove every single perception wrong.  Am I instilling this stubborn resolve into Briok's story?  It's an interesting question.

Or am I reflecting the influences on my life when I was a child?  Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Animoprhs by K.A. Applegate.  Lucas' epic monomyth gave me a clear, dramatic sense of what was right and what was wrong, and how the line between the two could easily be crossed.  Lord of the Rings pounded me with wondrous images of a magnificent otherworld, chiseling into my brain what it truly means to be in awe.  And Animoprhs showed me the dark underbelly of being a hero, the pain it causes being in such close contact with evil for so long.

Each one contributed in some way to this exegesis on fate and free will that I am writing.  Darth Vader chose to be evil, and yet he chose to be good.  He ultimately fulfilled the prophecy made about him.  Did he choose to do that?  Or was he destined all along for the path he walked?

Frodo chose to take the ring to Mordor and suffer such terrible pains.  But was he not bearing Bilbo's burden?  Wasn't he taking on something that wasn't really his?  Did fate choose him for the task?

Was it the Ellimist that manipulated space and time so that Jake, Cassie, Rachel, Tobias, and Marcos found Elfangor in the ruined construction site?  Or were they acting of their own free will, and just got unlucky that night?  Does that belittle their endeavors, the fact that random chance pulled them into a bitter war that would eventually consume their souls? 

All of these questions revolve around in my head like a merry-go-round, and as I struggle to keep pace with them I wonder how I'm going to answer any of them.  Because at the end of the day, I feel like the real reason why I'm so obsessed with this question is because I feel the pulls and tugs of fate myself.  And I wonder if I'm truly in control of my life.  I believe in God, and I am a devout Muslim.  But that doesn't mean I'm stoic in the face of eternity.  That's what I'm trying to give to Briok.  Belief so strong, that when it is being shattered I get an amazing story.  So here's the question of the week: what do you think of the theme?  And what were some of your favorite themes from books, ones that really struck a chord with you?  Until next time then.


  1. Anonymous9:14 AM

    It's great, you should read the Berserk manga for something similar to what you are doing

  2. Anonymous9:15 AM

    how are you going to differentiate between fate and free choice? is one or the other going to clearly be shown in your novel?

  3. @Anonymous 1, i'll get to that, it sounds great thanks!

    @Anonymous 2, how could they clearly be shown? I don't think I could have them as tangible entities, that'd be too weird. That stuff belongs in manga. I do not think that there is any clear cut way to show the divide between fate and free will, nor the bridge that connects the two. But I have developed something that I think will get the point across, and hopefully it works.