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Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Butch Dalisay on "Fiction"

“Good fiction… invites us like a shop with an ever-open door, where no clerk or saleslady will bother us while we poke around the corners and maybe even handle the merchandise, and we can always leave if nothing strikes our fancy, or return some other day for a closer look. Even so, we feel responsible for our choices or our purchases, and the good shopper will always spot the best offerings of the place. And usually, though not always, the shopkeeper knows what and where they are.

"…through fiction, we best make sense of our lives by stepping away from them – by momentarily becoming strangers unto ourselves, by exploring more interesting alternatives to what we already know or most likely would do, and, ultimately, by giving ourselves a new reason to hope and believe that life indeed follows a plot we can direct – if we only knew what it was.”

- Jose Y. Dalisay, Jr., The Knowing is in the Writing: Notes on the Practice of Fiction (Quezon City: University of the Philippines Press, 2006), pp. 10-11, 13

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