The last couple of mornings, I have been driving to work in a dense fog.
Not a mental fog. A real one, where mist swirls around the car and landmarks are turned into light and dark fuzzy outlines and the sky is orange from the streetlights.
(I am not a fan of the sodium vapor lights. I miss the silvery-white mercury vapor lights; they were much more soothing. Although I read somewhere a while back that metal halide is now de rigueur, so maybe if I wait another 40 years I’ll receive satisfaction.)
Anyway, I was wondering how society would change if humans were forced to muddle around in such fog all the time. You’d never see stars. You’d have no use for high-beams. You’d have to be right on top of something to recognize it. How would that change your attitude? Your outlook? Your philosophy? Would it affect the number of dreamers in a given group vs. the number of pragmatists? Would you be content not knowing what was out there? Would it even occur to you that something might be out there? Would you be more driven to go find out?
How you see the world definitely affects how you write. Compare The Night Cirus (written by a painter,) to Harry Potter (much more language artsy.) If you see a spade, you might write “spade” or “a digging implement with a squared-off bottom,” or “a garden tool with a grip worn shiny with use, a weathered wooden handle and a rusting square blade.” None of these are wrong. Any of them can be appropriate or inappropriate based on context. But how you write it depends on how you see it.
How do you choose to see your world? Is it full of color and texture? Or are things more functionally driven?