I believe in my imagination. I happen to posses what I think is a better than average imagination. It’s not that I could imagine more things than someone else (although what I imagine might be weirder), but that I exercise my imagination more often. Because of this, I can imagine things faster and can definitely believe in more.
How can one imagine things faster? I come up with things faster. When someone asks a question I don’t know the answer to – like ‘Where’s so-and-so?’ – I quickly invent an outrageous answer like ‘On top of the building behind you, sniping seagulls’ or, on a good day, ‘Freeing her aunt from feuding warlords in Rumania’.
I can also believe things like this when someone else tells them to me. When that happens, I can get pretty excited as I elaborate on the ‘lie’. But if the person who is spinning the tale from their own imagination is good enough, I am content to listen and believe.
This probably comes from reading too much fantasy. But having a really open mind for imagining and believing does come in handy – because I am a fiction writer. Having a good imagination is definitely a large part of being an author. You have to be able to imagine conversations, and different personalities. For fantasy, you often have to think up whole new worlds and beings. I enjoy imagining all these things, and I often do it without writing it down.
But more than that, I believe in my imagination. When I create something and I have it move around in front of me (in my mind’s eye), for a time I believe that it really does exist; I want it to exist. It’s like what little kids think: If you believe you can fly hard enough, you can; and if you fall, it’s only because you doubted. And that’s why I think my imagination is better than average – truly believing in what I imagine makes it stronger.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.