Thursday, 7 January 2010
The space inside your head
The brain is the primary sensory apparatus of sight, hearing, balance, taste, and smell. As we all know, the brain is an extremely complex organ - in a nutshell. But what does the brain really look like when it's dissected? And where do those fantastic ideas come from? Where exactly are they stored?
Do the ideas simply start off as foetuses and simply grow until they're ready to be 'born' as a stream of words? And how do we remember the storylines of all those novels we have read? Is the brain simply a library with small compartments, each featuring one book, or is it one big unstructured mess, with our favourite novels vying for the most prominent places within the brain? What is the memory capacity in gigabytes? How many books can the brain hold? And is it true that we only use a tiny fraction of our brain throughout our lifetime? If we used it to its full potential, would we churn out magnificent masterpieces in quick succession?
When you write your own novel is it stored in a special elevated place within the brain, so that you can recall the storyline, characters, sub-plots and incidents more easily than you would a novel in your collection?
It's all very complicated. I realise these are a series of questions, rather than an opinion as such. But the simple answer is that none of us know for sure how the brain functions.
And what about those 'bottom drawer' novels, the ones which are bastions of cringeworthy-ness? They're the ones which illustrate clearly ignorance of POV and the ones where we start the paragraph in first person and end in third. Do we instantly want to forget them as if they never existed, and do we urge our brain to push them further and further into oblivion in case they tarnish our well-written novels?