Become a professional liar
‘I’m not interested in anything that doesn’t involve lies. If I want the truth, well, I can Google it, can’t I?’
Robert Dessaix at Adelaide Writers Week 2012 March 5th
Fiction writers are, if you think deeply about it, professional liars. Fiction, by definition, is made up out of the imagination of the writer. I know what Dessaix (a prominent Australian writer) is trying to say, albeit somewhat tongue in cheek. The audience’s amused reaction was predictable. He is generally a very entertaining speaker, panellist and a very talented writer.
The interesting thing I find about thinking and talking about fiction is that, although all fiction is imaginary, made up, not true, there is another element at work in sometimes very subtle ways. One could call most fiction a lie, good literature will illuminate truths about the human condition.
And what is truth anyway?