I had this total realization this weekend.
As authors, at the end of the day we are basically formulating an experience for people. We design this cast of characters, a variety of settings and them a jumble of things that occur that make an audience feel a specific way.
We are providing them with an experience when they read what we have written.
This weekend sort of made me see how much of a privilege that actually is.
So my mother and I went to Sydney for the weekend to visit my Aunt.
My Aunt is eighty-six I think, my dad’s half sister and a nun of the order of the Sacred Heart in Kensington NSW.
Anyway so we had to get to the air port at like… 4am (NZ time) and wait three hours before a three hour flight, arriving at 9ish (AUS time). I was exhausted. Regardless, my Aunty really, really wanted to take my mother and I to the Blue Mountains.
We left at about 11, and drove all the way out of Sydney to the Blue Mountains, it took like… two hours because we stopped at all kinds of places and made detours to see houses that my Aunt and her friend (also a nun) had stayed in.
Anyway it was super hot and the drive was long and we finally arrived at Echo Point (I think that’s the name) which is basically this amazing overlook to this expanse.
NZ isn’t really that big… so for me it was just so amazing to see something so HUGE that went on and on. My Aunt pointed out various places and explained how here she didn’t have to ‘say formal prayers,’ because she just felt God there.
She also explained how my half uncle (her brother) had passed away in the Blue Mountains, a blue baby who died at eight as a result of there being little they could do for him at that time.
It was actually so beautiful and as long as the trip was it was super worth it.
Then there was this immense drive home with traffic and we eventually got back to the convent at about 6pm (AUS time)
I was exhausted.
But something really struck me on the way home as we were trapped in the Australian gridlock and that was this idea of gifting experiences to people.
‘I really wanted you to have this experience.’ My Aunt told my mother and I.
HAVE this experience. How awesome is that? We can gift people experiences. Things they will remember their whole lives? I just think that is so breathtaking and so so relevant to us as writers with our audiences.
We take something special to us, and we can show or communicate it to someone else because we want them to have it to.
Isn’t that at the end of the day what we writers do?