I’ve always found it fascinating. How can one theorize chaos? By definition chaos is “a state of complete disorder and confusion”. So one should not be able to actually have a theory based on complete disorder. It’s a total dichotomy. It’s wonderful.
Chaos theory, or the butterfly effect, states that “complex natural systems obey certain rules but are so sensitive that small initial changes can cause unexpected final effects, thus giving an impression of randomness”.
Sort of like writing isn’t it?
I think most writers are born as writers – some of us just take a little longer to realize our natural DNA. We grow up, go to college, find a job and follow the rules of life, usually writing along the way. Then a small, or not so small, initial change occurs – we read a poorly written book, our children go to college, we evaluate our lives – that causes unexpected final effects – we find ourselves with notebook in hand or fingers poised over the keyboard and a writer is set free.
A butterfly flaps its wings in Africa and a monsoon hits Australia. Chaos Theory.
We write a sentence, a paragraph, and a novel is created.
Think about the random things that spark stories. Recently on our blog Janis wrote about idioms, Peggy about the things that she keeps on her desk, Carley about the woman she sees while riding her bike to work – how many of these totally diverse things have sparked ideas in our own stories? Created characters we didn’t expect?
Writing is chaos theory at its best.
And we are the butterflies heralding its arrival.