A Well Balanced Diet of Story

This essay was originally published on Medium.com.

Human beings have a primal need for story not only because we desire entertainment but because story is what we use to make sense of the human experience. We are constantly assigning stories to people and situations; we even walk around believing a story about ourselves. Living in Park City, UT where I’ve come off ten days at the Sundance Film Festival, I have been thinking a lot about not only the stories in our heads but the stories we consume and the media through which we do it.

You might think as a novelist I would be biased toward the written word. At Sundance I watched so many good documentaries including It’s Only Life After All, Going Varsity in Mariachi, Food and Country, Feeding Tomorrow, and Going to Mars: The Nikki Giovanni Project. Film documentaries really do deliver powerful insights into important issues, lesser known people and situations in an economical and powerful way. Great documentaries provide revelation, teaching about worlds we may not have known existed.

, A Well Balanced Diet of Story

Great fiction, on the other hand, provides revelations about a world that is universal. I’m still a firm believer that when it comes to fiction, the book is always better than the movie. Or at least better than a feature length film. The ability to stream multi-episode series of a book adaption, however, provides adequate time to dwell in the nuance subtleties a good book provides. Take Fleischmann is in Trouble, for example — I loved it as much as I loved the book. Really looking forward to watching Daisy Jones and the Six when it comes out as a series as well!

Continue reading at Medium.com

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