Whooo...that was one long sentence. Pretty good, huh?
No, I'm not starting to introduce movie reviews, but I am mentioning the movie Inception because of a scene that I watched a few weeks ago.
So, Leonardo DiCaprio is introducing the idea of dream sharing and entering into someone's dreams with Ellen Page. Leo is hoping to use Ellen Page to create the world of the dream. (This is about as much explaining as I plan on doing, by the way; this movie really is complicated).
Here's how the conversation starts...
Leo: Imagine you're designing a building . You consciously create each aspect. But sometimes it feels like it's creating itself.
Ellen: Yah, like I'm discovering it.
And a thought came over me...the idea of Inception is a lot like developing an idea for a story. When you are developing a story, even if you are planner right down to the last period, you could never say exactly where the story is coming from. Just that it seems to be happening right before your eyes. We are discovering this story.
Here is where the reader comes in:
Leo: You create the world of the dream. We bring the subject into that dream and they fill it with their subconscious.
And isn't that exactly what we do to the reader? We build the "world" for them....that world being the book, the story, the plot line, the characters, the setting, etc. And when they read the book, they fill it with their subconscious.
But just like Ellen Page asks...
How could I ever acquire enough detail to make them think thats it's reality?
And that's where the skillful writer comes in (which leaves me to believe that Leo didn't need an engineer to build his dreams...he needed a writer!) As writers we are constantly aware of the fact that we must let the reader think it's reality, even if it's fantasy. We don't to have a scene in our stories where the reader is pulled away from the moment and looks at the story as if it's just a story. (Remember what happens in Inception...the subconscious begins to attack the invader. And we really don't want readers attacking our books.)
This time I want to know what you think...what can we do as writers to make sure that the reader continues to believe this world we have created is reality? What are some tips that you have?