Friday, August 7, 2015

Dune and Doing Difficult Deeds

Last week I went to the beach.While there, I did what any self-respecting person does: I read. One of my favorite reads of the week was Dune by Frank Herbert. It felt strangely appropriate. I'd heard lots of good things about it and decided to check it out. The buzz was true. It was like Tolkien in the way it so richly painted the world, yet unlike Tolkien in the way it took such little time to explain the world to the reader. Reading Lord of the Rings recently made me realize how much time Tolkien takes in explaining things to his reader. Herbert does the opposite: he gives the bare minimum for the reader's comprehension. And even then, comprehension doesn't dawn until halfway through the next chapter.
However, for all the beauties of the writing of the book or the plot of the book, that's not what I want to talk about. There's something very specific that Herbert presents in this book that caught my imagination and that is this: an easy life leads to poor people. Not necessarily poor in terms of wealth, but poor in terms of quality: intelligence, strength, and vision. It is those who are faced with all sorts of hardships that become the best, strongest, and most envied among humanity. This caught my attention specifically because I am entering college. How do the two relate? Well, college is hard.
   It's not even the academic side of college which proves difficult to me (though it may, I simply haven't started yet to know). The difficulty I have is the communication with others. I am what some my call 'extremely antisocial'. That's why I spend a lot of time on the internet, because then I can avoid people. My brother says I shouldn't go into public because I ooze awkwardness. I find it difficult not just to talk to someone, but even to approach someone with the intent of communication. It takes me hours to work up the courage to send an email. So how does this relate to Dune? It does in the fact that Dune embodies the idea that it is only when the odds are stacked against us when we can do the best. I become the best person I can be when I must strive and actually work for what I want. When life is handed to me on a platter, I fail to take full advantage of it. When I must fight for it, I either end up destroyed or bettered.
   This is why I strive to be greater than I am now. This is why I strive to learn more, to write better, and even to talk to people. This is why I want to do author interviews and guest posts (if I can ever work up the courage to ever ask anybody if I can interview them). I want to make relationships with others, I want to tell people about my books, I want to help others grow. It's just that sometimes I feel as if I'm stuck in sand up to the knees. Yet, when I look down at that sand (sand. I hate sand. It gets everywhere.) I can think of Dune and remember that difficulties are for my good.
   So I strive to be awkward sometimes. Because if things are awkward, that at least means I'm trying. So be awkward! Live a little, try new things. And if you want to do an interview or guest post on this blog, feel free to contact me (@Jesseorice on Twitter) or comment below. Or maybe I'll contact you. In the future. And it'll be awkward. The end.

No comments:

Post a Comment