To write is to tell the truth.
A wondrous dream, a fantasy incarnate, fiction completes us, mutilated beings burdened with the awful dichotomy of having only one life and the ability to desire a thousand.
—Mario Vargas Llosa
Fiction links us to our common longings. Mario Vargas Llosa, a Peruvian writer, touches on this phenomenon in the quote above. He identifies the central catalyst for writing narrative in general and fiction particularly—desire. Llosa acknowledges the split between reality and the ideal, between what we know of our lives and what we can imagine. We have the "ability to desire a thousand" lives, according to Llosa, and a fiction writer channels that ability by creating those lives, by creating worlds.
In many ways, we understand who we are through stories. We explain ourselves by telling stories—about our days, about our past, about our plans for the future. And we understand others through the stories they tell. Writing fiction involves a basic appreciation of the importance of story to human existence.
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