I have heard that “love makes the world go ‘round.” But, I beg to defer. While not sounding as musical or fanciful, I believe relationships make the world go around.
“We spend at least twelve years in school preparing for a career, how much time do we spend preparing for a relationship?” asks therelationshipfoundation.org.
But, as writers, I think we are a group of people who recognize the importance of relationships. Without them, where would our story be? Unless we are writing an essay or fact sheet on an inorganic substance perhaps, we need all the nuances of a relationship to move the story along. And even then, we won’t read it unless we can see a possible relationship to us, i.e. relate to something in the story.
Google defines relationship as, “the way in which two or more concepts, objects, or people are connected, or the state of being connected.” And we all know disconnection in a relationship is what makes a story go ‘round!
A newspaper article about the merits of saving the wolves, or fracking to suck more oil out of the ground, (frequent topics in our part of the world), usually includes opposing quotes or opinions about these subjects in order to show conflicting relationships between the wolves and ranchers, or ranchers and animal rights people, the economy and the environment, etc.
Relationship may occur between people, people and animals, mathematical figures, or inanimate objects even. In the movie Cast Away, there is a relationship between a volleyball and a character stranded on a deserted island, proving, in order to survive emotionally, a relationship is needed. You can watch the trailer at http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0026NZR98/ref=atv_feed_catalog?ref_=imdbref_tt_pv_vi_aiv_1&tag=imdbtag_tt_pv_vi_aiv-20
There are tons of articles and books about how to improve relationships, or have a good relationship. So why are there so many divorces? Wars? Domestic violence situations? Suicides? Weddings? Anniversary celebrations? Why is Valentine’s Day so popular? And religious holidays, which emphasize a relationship with a spiritual deity? The soap operas are all about relationships.
We were created for relationship I believe.
Most of what makes us tick is all about relationship. And we read stories because we want to see how other people’s relationships are handled. We learn by reading these examples.
And therein, I believe, lies the burden of the story teller, or at least my burden as a story teller. How do I make my story interesting, or riveting, and yet convey an insight or truth a reader might discover for the first time through my writing? And with this newfound insight or truth, how can the reader improve his or her relationship with someone? Perhaps even themselves.
Conflict is glue between a reader and a story. But in order to have conflict, there must first be a relationship. Or we utter, “Whatever!”
Ergo: Relationships make the world go ‘round.