Contrary to belief, not everything has to be explainable in fiction. I know, shocking right?
Real life: I live in Wyoming. Let me break down the weather for you in the past week.
- Four days ago: It snowed about five inches. It was cold and miserable and windy.
- Three days ago: It was slightly warmer. That kind of warm where your car is pretty toasty when you get in it so you don't feel like you're going to die of the cold. It was a decent day.
- Two days ago: It was a mediocre day in between the two before. Not too cold, not that warm. That is until I got out of a movie at about 6 p.m. and it was so freaking cold I spent about 10 seconds outside before I was dying of cold. Like I was shivering and my nose was instantly frozen and I had to stand outside to get gas and it sucked so bad all I wanted to do was climb under 50 blankets and sleep.
- Yesterday: It was warm. Not like, 60 degrees warm, but warm enough that I had to strip off my coat and go with a sweatshirt because I was too hot.
No it doesn't make any sense really (at least to most people who are not meteorologists, like me). But weird and crazy things happen IN REAL LIFE all the time! People do things they wouldn't ever do in riots because they get swept up in what other people are doing and it seems like the thing to do in the moment. People make stupid mistakes all the time that they know they shouldn't, they give people second chances they know don't deserve it, and the fall in love with people that are terrible for them. But also, weather is crazy, sometimes even when things are planned the best that they can be, things go wrong for no real reason, and YES! the equipment will fail when it never has before and never should. That's REAL LIFE!
I'm sorry for all the yelling, but it's something that I'm not only trying to convince you about, but myself. I'm one of the people that think there needs to be reasons for everything in fiction. Why did that happen? It's one of those questions that I am driven to find out. And while yes, fiction isn't exactly like real life because if it were it would either be so depressing or boring that no one would read it, fiction can emulate real life in this way. Not everything has to be explained to the littlest detail. Because most of it, people will go along with it anyway. (Most people. I'm not talking about all those nit-picky people, because no matter how hard you try, you're not going to please them fully anyway so stop trying.)
And there's even a term for it! It's called "willing suspension of disbelief" where people ignore logic and accept that the fiction you bring to them is real and magic and vampires exist or that it's really 2099 and we've destroyed the moon. We go with it, because you, the writer, tell us to. And while there are some rules I say that you can not let yourself break (like no matter how hard you try, there will always be gravity on Earth because of its mass) there are little things that you don't need to spend so much time on. Because people might not care that you spent three days writing this long expansive explanation about why that would happen. It doesn't matter.
Crazy things happen in real life without any explanation at all. Why should fiction be different in this way?
What do you guys think about crazy real life stuff? What's the craziest thing you've ever seen?