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"We need it."

David Gane
David Gane
1 min read

I get caught up in the action of the story. "This happens, then this, then this..." The character wants something, and they'll continue struggling for it until they get it or don't.

Yet, this is not all story. That is one small slice of the pie.

A story is also filled with poetry, images, and metaphors. It contains observation, reflection, and ideas. It is about characters struggling to make sense of the world's complexities, each other, and themselves.

I was reminded of all this while watching this video with Ethan Hawke:

Most people don't spend a lot of time thinking about poetry. Right? They have a life to live, and they're not really that concerned with Allen Ginsberg's poems or anybody's poems, until their father dies, they go to a funeral, you lose a child, somebody breaks your heart, they don't love you anymore, and all of a sudden, you're desperate for making sense out of this life, and, "Has anybody ever felt this bad before? How did they come out of this cloud?" Or the inverse -- something great. You meet somebody, and your heart explodes. You love them so much you can't even see straight. You know, you're dizzy. "Did anybody feel like this before? What is happening to me?" And that's when art's not a luxury—it's actually sustenance. We need it.

I won't always remember that stories aren't just about characters struggling to get something—but hopefully, I'll come back to this page someday and be reminded about how it feeds the soul.


David Gane Twitter

Co-writer of the Shepherd and Wolfe young adult mysteries, the internationally award-winning series, and teacher of storytelling and screenwriting.


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