“An author in his book must be like God in the universe, present everywhere and visible nowhere.”

Gustave Flaubert

Consider the quote above. Have you ever made your presence known in your own stories, or interrupted its flow by poking your head in the lives of the characters?

When I came across this quote, I noticed myself nodding vigorously to no one in particular. I have been guilty of making a cameo every now and then in the stories I write on occasions, and have been advised to rein myself in. It’s such an amusing concept, isn’t it? That you create and write this world, yet you cannot claim it within the telling because your presence will taint the sanctity of the tale. Sometimes, it makes you wonder. If the characters you create could actually be alive, would they notice your hand on how their lives turn out?

The point is: stay INVISIBLE. You are God – a tiny one that only impacts the world of your book. Be the God, create the world, and then, get out of the way! If you’re caught, then you haven’t done a good job of being a God. It’s not an easy job, is it?

(Image courtesy of Stuart Miles/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

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3 thoughts on “Invisible God

  1. This is an issue I’ve been struggling with ever since I started impromptu on a novel and finished it. An amateur, I had no idea that my author’s interjections were uncool and now I have so much work to do!

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    1. Yes, it always happens the first time around. I had to completely re-write the first quarter of my 1st novel because as a teenager I had spread my wings all over it. Keep going. It will be worth it.

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