Now that I am recognized as a writer, several people have asked me "How does the world appear to a writer? How does your mind differ from that of a non-writer?"
I didn't know how to answer that question until recently. I was talking to a young friend. (He is in his thirties and that is young to me.) He was saying how much he missed his cousin, Mark, who moved to Boston a year ago. I said "I know you miss Mark but be happy that he and Maxie found each other. They are perfect together. Were you there when that magic moment occurred?"
He replied "No. What happened?"
I told him "Well, as you will recall, Mark was managing a restaurant in Roanoke, but he had always been a genius with computers, and so it came to pass that a Boston firm specializing in internet marketing offered him a job for what was an obscene amount of money compared to what the restaurant paid. He took the job, not for the money. He still lives modestly, but for the challenge. You know Mark, so you know what I mean.
Anyway, he really liked the restaurant staff he managed, and so he threw a farewell party at the the restaurant the day he was to leave for Boston. It was a bittersweet occasion. As the party concluded, there were a lot of tearful farewells, except for the one young woman who stood back. Just before he left, he turned and looked directly at her. His eyes betrayed his sadness. His eyes betrayed his longing. She met his gaze for a moment, involuntarily flushed, then quickly turned away.
"He had walked across the parking lot to his car when it happened. Something inside of her fell apart. She started to sob uncontrollably then she screamed out his name as she raced across the parking lot. He turned just before she fell into his arms. He held her tightly, tilted up her face, and kissed her. He said 'I will come back for you.'
"He had loved her from the first day he met her. But she had never shown any interest in him. She was a single mother. She had once completely loved and completely given herself to a man, the father of her little girl. But he abandoned them just before the baby was born. That rejection was so cruel and devastating that she completely walled herself off from everyone except her little girl. That is why Maxie didn't know she loved Mark. She didn't know that she had loved him, too, from the first day she met him. It was only when she was one minute away from losing him forever that a crack, and then a breach, allowed her to push through the wall, fly into his arms, and with her tears and her kiss, declare her love for him.
"True to his word, Mark came back for her and her little girl. They moved to Boston and, as you know, he is so much in love with them that he is obnoxious. I remember I once said to him 'Enough with Maxie and her little girl. Get a life.' He said, 'I have a life and it is perfect.'"
My young friend said, "Mark never told me about that. Is that really true?"
I looked at him thoughtfully before I paused and said,"Maybe."
How many worlds are there? How many realities are there? As many as there have been minds to conceive them. People who are readers are blessed in that they can experience the worlds and realities of others. But people who are writers are blessed in that they can not only share their worlds and realities, but they can also create worlds and realities to share. And if they are good enough you can't tell the difference...or maybe you just don't want to.