Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Suspended Perceptions

Any narrative journey is a confluence of events, lives and emotions. It is a carnival ride that the participants are thrown onto and it's up to the gathered crowd to judge the entertainment value of watching participants on the rides.

Like any carnival there are a great variety of rides available and a number of ways that the crowds can experience them. Each can be equated to a narrative avenue and an emotional outlet that is available to experience.

Some individuals prefer to experience the ride first-hand, experiencing all of the emotions, events and the personal interactions along with the participants. In the narrative journey these adventurous individuals would choose a first-person perspective, they want to experience what the participants experience.

Photo Credit
Others prefer to watch participants reactions to the rides, enjoying not being on the ride that is evoking all of the emotions in its participants. Honestly, it can be quite the experience watching the brave climb aboard the Orbiter and then watching them scream in terror as they are hurled about. These observers typically choose the third-person perspective for their narrative journey.

Between the adventurers and the observers the carnival rides offer endless opportunities and countless experiences. Examining these attractions from an outside perspective it is possible to identify the key emotions that each ride is designed to exploit.

Regardless whether it's the Tunnel of Love, a calm ride that brings the participants closer together or  a Tilt-a-whirl that offers non-stop excitement each is an abstracted concept focused on one singular emotion that exploits the behaviors of participants. Every participant boards a ride with their own expectations and perceptions of what the ride will convey to them. In the narrative sense these are all just genres. Just as the participant is aware what each ride is meant to convey, so too is the reader aware of what each genre entails.

Interestingly, despite the cliches and the preconceived notions participants and observers have, they still enjoy the ride.

2 comments:

Jill Kemerer said...

Yes, I love a good roller coaster AND tilt-a-whirl when I'm reading. Anything that brings me up, down, and makes my stomach twirl is good to me!

PW Creighton said...

Same here Jill, I find it quite entertaining how we will let ourselves be caught up in cliches if it's on our terms. There's plenty of fun to be had if it's what we're looking for.

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