I am most content, as I have often mentioned here, when my feet are solidly planted on the ground, and the rest of me is so high in the clouds that it is nowhere to be seen.

That high, stretched view is useful for a writer.

For a person, not so much.

A writer strives—by nature and by force of will–to see many sides of any issue. In creating a character (barring the use of the omnipresent viewpoint), that ability is a necessity. In the “real” world, it can be a handicap.

The fruits of sitting on the mental fence can be exhilarating. Whole worlds are available for view. Decisionmaking is another matter altogether. This works. That works. Both points-of-view have great potential. Both have cautions built in.

Let somebody else decide. Someone with a deeper-driven stake in the outcome or more knowledge of what is necessary. That’s life.

In fiction, the characters decide. They climb off the fence and claim a direction under their own steam. My job is merely to gather the facts that inform the choice of direction.

Okay, okay, I know that the decisions are mine. They don’t seem to be. And that is as should be. Isn’t that the role of the writer—to invest one’s characters with so much life that they wander off on their own?

Again, in life, the issue is more problematic. I am not wishy-washy or uncommitted. I prefer to think of the stance as balance. Even when that balance cripples. Even when it strips me of the ability to choose my way at any given fork in the road.

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