Why We Write What We Write

And by ‘we’ I mean those of us who eschew the nihilism of  Grimdark.

Hugo and Dragon Award nominee, Benjamin Cheah Kai Wai recently posted:

‘This world is a dark world.

Open a newspaper and see for yourself. Murder, genocide, civil war, assaults, rapes, kidnapping, sex trafficking, corruption, on and on, and endless litany of crimes high and petty. Any outrage, if any, will last until the moment a celebrity opens her mouth or the media moves on to the next event it deems worthy of outrage.

Evil has been with humanity since the dawn of time. It has been with us long before you and I were born, and will continue to be part of the the human condition long after we are dust.

But if we will, we can become as flames, and drive back the darkness from our part of the world.

And pass on the flame elsewhere in the world.

Artists hold a special place in society. With their gifts they touch the hearts, minds and souls of their audience. Be it a book, a play, a movie, a sculpture, a game, every work of art has the power to influence its audience. For better or for worse.

In the name of realism, many artists today chase the darkness. Every vice is elevated, every taboo broken, every blasphemy committed. Nothing is sacred, everything is false. There are no heroes, only degrees of evil. No saviours, only monsters wearing the masks of men. No virtue, only the will to power.

The intelligentsia claim this is ‘dark’, ‘gritty’, ‘realistic’. It is the defining aesthetic of our times, a relentless march towards deeper depths of degradation and desecration…’

Are they correct? What does this sort of fiction do to its readers? Find out by reading the rest of  Going Bright.

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