6/17/2014 – Reality vs. the Stuff of Dreams
In my writers’ critique group, a complaint is sometimes hurled at another writer’s plot points by saying, “I don’t believe it, couldn’t happen. It’s not realistic.” Since we are writing fiction, is this a valid criticism?
One might say that so many unbelievable things do happen—we see them online everyday–that we should accept the possibilities, no matter how bizarre. We can point to the old standby from Shakespeare’s Hamlet: “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” Another might say that fiction requires a “willing suspension of disbelief.”
For mystery writers, Dr. Max M. Houck, director of D.C.’s Department of Forensic Sciences, speaking