Being a parent and being a writer have combined to teach me about what I call The Care, The Fair and The Fire – three ideas that God hit me over the head with recently. These ideas have encouraged me to realign how I think of the roles I have.
Yesterday, April 26, 2015, I had the privilege of speaking in Times Square for the 100th Armenian Genocide Commemoration – a call to remember the 1.5 million Armenians massacred by Ottoman Turkey seeking to ethnically cleanse its country (a good portion of which used to be ancient Armenia).
Among writers and scholars far more qualified than I to speak on the subject, I was honored to be there because of service, because I currently chair a national Armenian women’s organization dedicated to serving our people around the world.
Sometimes when we serve, we go on unexpected journeys, learning unexpected lessons and benefiting from unexpected opportunities. Yesterday’s was the largest crowd I had ever given a speech to, and perhaps ignorance is bliss: I later learned that there were 15,000 people in the crowd, which might have been a knee-freezer had I known earlier!
I can’t believe how much this issue has come up in my life and work.
Acquaintances and distant relatives of mine still say, “Yeah, I prefer nonfiction because it’s TRUE!” And I wince.
Sometimes our kids ask, when they read a book or watch a movie: “Mom, is this real? Is this true? Did this really happen?”
Or in the wonderful film Sideways, when Paul Giamatti’s character meets his friend’s future in-laws (Armenian, I’m embarrassed to say) and they tell him they prefer nonfiction to novels like his, because nonfiction is true, based on real life.
And fiction isn’t based on life?
What is true about anything a writer writes?