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Most sensational subjects have been treated to death. And, as novelist Martin Amis tells us, good writing is a “war against cliché.” The story’s problems might be partially redeemed by crisp dialogue, vivid descriptions and an impeccable edgy style—but the plain fact is, they be solved.
Steer clear of tired plots and you, your characters and your readers will avoid all kinds of heartache.
This, after all, is the reality for many professional fine artists.
Even poor Vincent van Gogh, that most depraved and deprived of artists, fails to live up to the image.
Our own private thoughts, dreams, intuitions and fantasies are inevitably colored by what psychiatrist Carl Jung called the —the vast, reservoir-like body of shared human experiences and of myths, symbols and legends.He will need to avoid all the stereotypes of loony-bin lore coined by Ken Kesey in set a story on a mental ward, or that you can’t tell stories about mental patients and the abuses they suffer at the hands of their keepers.But if you do so, you need to realize what you’re up against. Every milieu has its clichés, its stock characters and stereotypes.In pretending to be anyone other than themselves, writers sacrifice the very thing we most crave from them: authenticity.
As the moth is attracted to flame, less-than-vigilant writers are attracted to the bright light of intrinsically dramatic situations, where the drama is preassembled, ready to use—. And convenience for writers—convenient plots, convenient characters, convenient coincidences, convenient settings or situations or strings of words—almost always spells doom. What are the expectations raised by such a setting?
A common stereotype is that of the starving artist.