Of all the comments I’ve received for “White Wolf Moon” a couple stand out above the others. One is about the dialogue. Most people that have read it appreciate the natural if sometimes scattered flow of the speech. Some tell me they sometimes found it difficult to follow but also admitted they felt they were eavesdropping on actual conversations. Their point is well-taken and while I’ve been involved in many real conversations that have been difficult to follow I have addressed this issue in the sequel. I do understand that because it flows in my head doesn’t necessarily mean it will be just as smooth for the reader. One of many lessons you learn when you get that first book published.
The other comment that stands out is that the characters feel like real people. This remark means the most to me. The fact that my people are based on actual friends from that era obviously makes them real to me but to realize that I have translated that reality for a reader is gratifying.
Today I find myself wondering…what is ‘real people’?
Those that have read “White Wolf Moon” know my feelings on the ‘real world’.
To me there isn’t an all-encompassing real world, only how you perceive your little corner of it. I learned a long time ago that anyone who says “welcome to the real world” is simply welcoming me to their world and generally I find their opinions or philosophies have no bearing on my life.
Now I wonder…is it the same with people?
To me real people present no facades. They have no agenda. Simply, what you see is what you get. They’re not hung up with the trappings of well-to-do-idness. There’s an inherent and perhaps indescribable quality about them. They have opinions and they don’t mind sharing them…not preaching them but sharing them. Sometimes we agree and sometimes we don’t but that’s not what’s important. The important thing is that we’re discussing issues in an equal forum.
I’m approaching seventy so I spent a few my early years in that sixties lifestyle. I wasn’t totally ensconced but I developed a lot of the attitude that people associate with the “Love Generation”. I worked in radio broadcasting at the time so it was okay for me to grow a little hair, in fact it was almost expected. My circle of friends (the characters in WWM) had a great little week-end getaway spot in the hills where we lived a beautiful part-time existence. We called it the “Bar Ass” ranch. Those who have read White Wolf Moon know all about this place as it, along with a few of our exploits, has been documented in the book. Yes I now admit there’s a lot more fact in that fiction than I previously acknowledged. It was this environment that provided the nucleus for what would become my life philosophy. There in those woods, surrounded by and appreciating nature and long before cell phones and laptops, we were cut off from the world. People were appreciated as people, not for what they had or what they brought to the table. Even if it was only a few weekends a month, it was invigorating in a peaceful sort of way.
My point is that this was my real world back then and those people were the real folks that populated my planet and some of them still do.
Maybe this is the key. Those living in the entitlement world of today might consider anyone who agrees with their philosophies as being real people while those I consider to be real people exist in a world similar to mine. We share a common outlook on the world in general…I identify with them and they identify with me.
But now comes the fly in the butter. Initially I thought, based on the age of those who appreciated the references in my book, that the more mature reader would be my reader…those who had lived through those times and could relate. I’m finding it interesting that the people I’ve met recently who have read the book and identified with the characters tend to be people I feel comfortable around and yet they don’t fit neatly into any age group or social status.
Perhaps my theory that real worlds and real people go hand in hand is wrong, I don’t know.
Perhaps real people are just where you find them…if you take the time to look.