Wednesday, 24 October 2012

This might be a random way to start off a new blog - ideally I guess I would start with a post introducing myself and what this blog is going to be about. Instead I’m just going to dive right in!

I saw a question someone asked me the other day about my novel, Chasing Freedom, and it made me think. And I decided to share those thoughts.

Let me give you a little background. In my novel my central character must decide between his freedom and, well, pretty much everything else. The question someone asked me was, is his freedom really the most important thing that he could give up? I think they were trying to ask me if it was really a big enough sacrifice for it to be the driving force of the novel.

It was a question that no one had asked me before, and it made me pause to think. To be honest though, I didn’t have to think about it for long.

The simple answer was yes. An easy, simple yes.

Perhaps it’s just me, but personally, I can think of nothing that I value more than my freedom.

Not my physical freedom, although, yes, that’s very important too, but my mental freedom. The freedom in my life to wake up each morning and decide for myself what kind of person I want to be. The freedom to make my own choices about the life I want to lead, and the things I want to do. The freedom to believe in what I want to believe, to hold the opinions I want to hold.

I can imagine no worse fate than to have those freedoms taken away from me. To have someone else choose those things for me. To tell me how I should live, or love, or feel. To have someone else decide if I am going to be a good or bad person.

The freedom to be ourselves, even if others don’t like it should be the most sacred thing to all of us. That freedom is taken away from kids at school by bullying. It’s taken away from adults by societal pressure to conform and fit it. And yes, perhaps I’m getting a little political here.

But back to the fantasy world of my novel, when Chase is forced to choose between his freedom and the ones he loves, it’s not his physical freedom that he’s sacrificing. It’s the freedom to determine his own destiny, and that, in my mind, would be one hell of a big sacrifice. I think, or I hope, that I would make the same choice Chase does. But it sure wouldn’t be an easy one.

As for what he actually does decide? Well, you’d have to read the book to find out!

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