We’re all a Bunch of Liars!

Whilst browsing through the quotes on Goodreads, I came upon one by Mark Twain that got me thinking:

“If you tell the truth, you don’t have to remember anything.” ― Mark Twain

Fiction writers, myself included, are all a bunch of liars. But, not liars in the bad sense. You’re not a liar that deserves to be hanged in front of your peers. Don’t be so hasty. In fact, liars fiction writers are some of my favorite people!

This also reminds me of something my creative writing teacher told us the other day. He told us that fiction writers indeed are liars, and whoever can lie the best, is the best fiction writer. So, essentially, whoever can come up with the best, most believable lie is the best writer.

This certainly is an interesting concept. We don’t often think of ourselves as liars. I think we more often think of ourselves as craftsmen (or craftswomen!), artisans, wordsmiths if you will. We generally don’t label ourselves with a word that has such negative connotations.

However, is it really a bad thing? Is it so bad to be considered the best liar of writing? Surely such a term can be followed with a good paycheck. If you’re good at lying? Why not run with it?

So, I leave you to contemplate this idea. Are we writers merely just writers? Or are we the capable of more? Are we dastardly brewers of lies and deceit whose sole gain is to fool our readers into believing in a world so different and far from our own?

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6 thoughts on “We’re all a Bunch of Liars!

  1. I must agree with your creative writing teacher. When you are telling a story, you must believe it yourself. The best liars (fiction writers) bring a story to life, and it becomes difficult to discern between what is real and what isn’t.

  2. I’ve always felt (and heard it repeated) that the best lies (fiction) have an element of the truth in them. It (the truth) leads to believability and the more a story rings true, the more likely it is to resonate with a reader.

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