“Politics” in Writing

I see a lot of authors today getting hate for sharing their political opinion on their social media profiles, which is completely idiotic. Many people who are hating on the authors they supposedly like are disillusioned by the pedestal they have lifted that author onto in their own minds. They believe the author should stick to simply writing stories and stay out of politics. This thought process had me wondering two things. What is the definition of politics, and how is it that writing and/or stories are considered completely separate? I understand that readers are tired of hearing about politics and go to these authors to help escape from the current troubles of the world, and they are justified to do so. All they have to do is go pick up the book the author wrote. Complaining about the author stating their opinion on social media is not only unfair to that author, but only adding more hate into the world, which is something I think most authors are trying to avoid, or in fact do the opposite of.

Writers are first and foremost observers. We observe and then try to capture “human” moments within our stories because doing so creates a story that really connects and stays with a reader. It affects them in some way that will make them remember it, or think about it or the topic it represents. There are many books written with direct political influence or written about politics themselves. George Orwell wrote 1984 about the current political climate in 1948. He simply transposed the last two digits in the title. Ironically enough, 1984 has returned to the bestseller’s list. When it first came out in 1948, it was banned in several countries, many of whom were run by a communist party. And if anything should peak curiosity, that is investigating a banned book.

Usually it is banned because it represents an ideal that governing parties don’t want spread among its citizens or followers. But why would they not want that? Because they might discover a new way of thinking that contradicts what the party’s ideals. The definition of Politics (after a quick search) is currently “the activities associated with the governance of a country or other area, especially the debate or conflict among individuals or parties having or hoping to achieve power.” Power here being the main word. How does that saying go? “Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” Anyone who blindly follows is no longer a free individual but only the tool in the hand of someone in “power.”

The current political climate is not good. Recent events are causing tension between countries and individuals. We are divided and are being divided further by those in power and the people they claim to protect us from. The human population has never been able to stop its continual self harm. There has always been violence. It has only changed names throughout the years. Right now, it is known globally as terrorism. War is no longer fought openly. People fear the shadows but they also fear their neighbors. And people expect observers not to comment on this? They expect their favorite authors to simply ignore what is happening in the world? No. If you like an author, presumably you like the books they write, then go read the book. Don’t get mad that they have an opinion on the current events of the world. They are using their popularity to spread the word and help others. Most authors I see on social media aren’t spreading hate, but only trying to help. They have created or are helping promote organizations that help the victims of the current political conflicts.

Most authors have good hearts. They comment on observations and capture human moments to make us feel a range of emotions. Their ultimate goal is not to only write a good story, but to help people grow into better human beings. Yes, politics effect our everyday lives and authors give their comments about certain events or certain politicians. If you don’t like it, put down your phone and pick up their book. You may not realize it, but you’ll still be reading their social commentary. It’s just hidden in a well written story that helps you escape from this world if only for a time.

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