Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Star Wars: My Early Inspiration. (What and what not to do)

I was raised a Preachers son. Could any of you have guessed that? Bet not. Ever since I was in kindergarden, I experienced conflicted feelings for the religious tradition I was being raised in. I'm not saying it is right or wrong, I'm just saying the shoe did not fit. So, how does this bring me to Star Wars? Allow me to explain.
Can you see the ever-burning question in my eyes?

All conflict must experience resolve. Star Wars gave me resolve at my early age. It gave me the Force, a feeling that I could relate to at an early age. You see, it didn't come with the whole Father, Son, and Holly Ghost thing. It didn't come with Adam and Eve or the Ten Commandments. I didn't have to struggle to put the pieces together in order to understand what the hell I was hearing. What it did come with was the Force: a simple concept of the flow of spirit through all life itself.

Fast Forward about twenty years, I turned twenty-five. I felt a bit insane, like I couldn't live in this world; that I was wickedly out of place. In effort to understand my own mind, I began to write what has become the epic, contemporary Mythology that attempts to explain the world we live in by understanding it through a Parallel Reality, a Parallel Earth. With this said, I began the process with absolutely no idea of where I was going, what to expect, or what would happen.
Back to Star Wars. I began to understand the world of Star Wars on a more intimate level and could really appreciate what George Lucas had created through not only adult eyes, but through the eyes of my  attempts at creating my own world. Crafting something of such epic proportion is not easy.

After about four of five years of work, I came out the other end and was excited about my magnificent story. It was sure to blow minds. Then I read it. Ugh! I failed. Still, along the way, I experienced many feelings of accomplishment. Refusing to give up, knowing full well that the story was peppered with juicy bits of brilliance, I decided I was going to break up what had become an 1,100 page first Draft (Yes 1,100 pages of 'What the Hell was I thinking!') and turn it into a trilogy. It worked for George Lucas right? Why not me?

Thus began the long journey again. Upon completion of writing the first third, I had the same experience. Ups and downs. Highs and lows. And still, at the end, I knew it wasn't ready.

About this time, I heard George Lucas was working on Star Wars, "The Phantom Menace" and reveled in the idea of seeing how Darth Vader became who he was. Also, I had begun reading Joseph Campbell, one of Lucas's mentors. These two things led me to great revelations. First off, reading Joseph Campbell opened my mind and revealed to me the depth that I needed to create to achieve my message. Also, upon watching Episode I, "The Phantom Menace" I realized I didn't want to back-peddle with my story. It became apparent to me that George Lucas was limited in how he could tell his tale because of the limits of the back-story from his first and ultimately superior Trilogy.

An Original Master Piece
As the years progressed, I wrote two novelettes on the history of Parallel Earth as well as a movie script. Each time I ran into the same problem, I was left unfulfilled because I didn't know the whole story. One thing the new Star Wars Trilogy let me know was how limiting it would be to my stories, my mythology,    if I tried to fit them into a template that didn't work. Just as my understanding of spirit could not fit the mold of contemporary Christianity, my story no longer fit the mold from my earlier drafts.

For so long I had existed and written about the tail end of my world. I knew the characters, their history, and what happened to them. With this knowledge, I decided I didn't want to pull a George Lucas and create my best work first, only to compromise my creative license in the end, I had to go back to the beginning and start there. Novel idea? This marked the beginning of, "Parallel Earth: Advent of Evil."
There is no redemption for his creation!

Nearing completion on what has become the book One of Seven, I knew I had made the right choice. Of coarse years have passed. Life has happened. I now have two daughters. My wife and I have been together sin '96 and my perspective on life has changed. Life itself, and the process thereof, has now lent itself to the process. The messages in the story do not ring hollow.  Like all great mythology, the stories are rooted to my relationship of the experience of the individual to the world in which they live. To me Parallel Earth is a matter of the historical and factual experience that my life has become. Just as we come into maturity over years of living, so too has my understanding of what it means to be alive. My MYTHOLOGY, the tales that unfold in Parallel Earth, stands as a testament of my own maturity and my relationship to this world. I do not wish for my tales to regress into adolescence as Star Wars had. I would rather them age with wisdom and maturity as we are all destine to do ourselves.

P.S. Sorry about the long post. I look forward to your comments. Hope you enjoyed it.

Scott Clark

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