Neil Gaiman is well known to be wonderful in so many ways, something about which I’m sure no one needs convincing. This article in The Guardian proves it once again, nevertheless. It’s a bit long, and retreads some familiar ground on the importance of fiction and libraries and literacy, and some vague politics, but it’s got some fantastic gems:
We writers – and especially writers for children, but all writers – have an obligation to our readers: it’s the obligation to write true things, especially important when we are creating tales of people who do not exist in places that never were – to understand that truth is not in what happens but what it tells us about who we are. Fiction is the lie that tells the truth, after all.
Fiction is the lie that tells the truth, after all. This has been bouncing around my head like a game of PONG.
We all – adults and children, writers and readers – have an obligation to daydream. We have an obligation to imagine. It is easy to pretend that nobody can change anything, that we are in a world in which society is huge and the individual is less than nothing: an atom in a wall, a grain of rice in a rice field. But the truth is, individuals change their world over and over, individuals make the future, and they do it by imagining that things can be different.
Go read it, then visit your local library!