Grown ups

Before he anchored a fantasy franchise, Peter Dinklage played a taciturn oddball who just wanted to be left alone, in The Station Agent (2003). I remember that movie as a bit of a revelation. Was this, I thought, what adult friendships were really supposed to be like? Although there were ample moments of emotional exposition throughout the film, its fundamental model of friendship was that people just kind of did decent things for each other, without messy deconstruction and exposition. No one benefited much from explaining themselves in painful detail. The presence of empathic adults was all the redemption that the characters really needed.

I think most of the relationships in my writing are a bit like those friendships. They unfold though a few actions and words, without an overabundance of fanfare. The world of fire/rescue can be a bit like that, too. Firefighters can go full maudlin in extreme circumstances, but for the most part, they hold it in. We have each others back. Not much more to be said about that. 

In fiction, though, people like a little fanfare. They appreciate an occasional messy deconstruction. So I've had to work on allowing characters to expose their emotional lives. That's part of the vulnerability in telling stories, making plain all that you cherish and wondering if it will be real to someone else.