The Story of Dave - A.W. Palmer
The idea of fate is an interesting and complicated discussion.
Depending on who you ask, you can get a very strong reaction or you can get a mere shrug. Some people hate the idea that their life might be predetermined or that they were meant to end up working a particular job, married to a particular person. Other people find comfort in that idea.
When discussing or thinking about the notion of fate, it's common to focus on how fate might affect you. Does fate have your best interest at heart? How is fate going to make you happy?
A.W. Palmer chose a slightly different approach to the topic. In The Story of Dave, a man struggles with where fate has left him, only to realize that it wasn't about him at all.
We often fail to see how our actions or inaction change the people around us. We're quick to say "What would have happened to me if. . ." but we rarely say "What would have happened to my friends or my family if. . ."
Palmer does an excellent job of leading his readers on this path of discovery. He gives just enough hints for us to realize that some bigger picture is being drawn, but not enough to give away the ending.
For those of you who are looking for a new perspective, which should include everyone if we knew what was good for us, I highly recommend The Story of Dave. It will make you view your world in a different light.
Some Bio Information
A.W. Palmer is a 30 year old that still thinks he is 20. He misses college and the freedom it provided. He does not miss having to pay tuition. He loves to travel, but he also loves staying home. He has been to 47 states and has a goal to visit all 50. A longer term goal is to visit all 7 continents. He loves his family very much. He also wants you to know that he is a ravenous sports enthusiast and is simply insane when it comes to college football, specifically, the S.E.C.
1) Do you believe in fate?
The older I get the more intrigued I am by this question. Is life determined or do we have free will? I have struggled very intently with this dichotomy and simply have no absolute answer. I lean very strongly in support of the idea that our reality is some combination of both. Perhaps, the ideas of determinism and free will are not a dichotomy, but instead are symbiotic in their relationship to each other. In other words, we are chosen for and yet we also get to choose. For example, as a Christian, I find myself faced with the questions "Are the situations and choices in my life predestined by God?" or "Are my choices and situations completely based on me?" Taking this further, "Do I choose God or does He choose me?" I postulate it could be both. Now this idea is definitely paradoxical, but I think that this is okay. My belief about God is that He is much, much, bigger and wiser than myself. Thus, things that might seem absurd to me are quite possible for Him. Take the question of square circles. Could God make a square circle? A possible answer is yes, but we would not be able to perceive it. It would exist beyond our mental capability. I understand a circle and I understand a square separately. My ability to understand fate and free will is the same. I am only able to understand them separately. I believe it possible for God the that combinations are plausible, just beyond my ability to perceive. So yes, I believe in fate, I am just not sure that it is exclusive.
2) What or who do you find inspirational?
Obviously, as a Christian I am most inspired by Jesus Christ. A little less obviously, I am also inspired by George Washington. I know this might seem silly to many people, but I was able to visit Mt. Vernon last year and was awestruck by it. He was just a tremendous guy. Not perfect I am sure. I have heard it likely that he was unfaithful to his wife and the like, but even so the way he approached life is fascinating to me - or maybe they just did a great job hyping him up on the tour. I don't really know. It is just hard to look at dollar bills the same way that I used to look at them. I also really like Pete Rose and think it is a tragedy that he is still banned from baseball. Bring back Pete.
3) Describe the perfect plot.
The perfect plot is exciting, but concise. I like stories with a twist. I really love a story that is mysterious, but not intentionally written to be a mystery story. I want to read the last page and think "Wow I can't believe that just happened." That said....please....never....ever....leave a story with an ambiguous and opened ending. I want to think about what happened at the end of the plot and not think what could have possibly happened. I am sure some readers enjoy the open ended technique. It is just not for me.
4) Is tragedy a necessary part of living?
C.S. Lewis said, "The pain I feel now is the happiness I had before. That's the deal." I tend to agree with him.
5) What are your writing goals?
I want to write an exceptional novel and make lots of royalties. I will buy a private island and all of my friends can come over and hang out. It would also be great if my books could help people. Maybe even in a financial way if I was able to earn enough to help people in exceptional ways. If my novels are terrible then perhaps people could burn them for warmth in the winter. That is a form of helping too, I suppose.
6) Can you walk us through your writing process?
My writing process is so simple and unsophisticated. I just start writing. Sometimes I have an end in mind. Sometimes I just write and see where it goes. I also listen to music while I write. Loud. Rock. Music.
7) Who's your favorite author?
Without a doubt, C.S. Lewis. He has meant the world to me. I would have loved to have had the opportunity to go to the pub with him. I can only imagine the conversations.