Alan August

To me, story is much more than a whimsical diversion or an exercise in wish fulfillment. Though we don't often realize it, humans are creatures of story. Narrative is the source of everything we do. From philosophy and religion to art and science, down to the most practical psychological and social interactions of daily life, we all tell stories and operate through a worldview.

It is this level of paradigmatic storytelling, the fundamental, unconscious mythological water through which we all swim, that interests me. I ask: Are the stories we tell ourselves as individuals and as a society helping or harming us? In what ways? Are there stories that would be more beneficial for the human race now? How can we live a more harmonious life with ourselves, each other, and the cosmos? If our current stories aren't working, how can we shift to ones that are?

I'm interested in telling stories about the stories we tell ourselves, how these stories can harm us, and how, by shifting to new stories, we can change, grow, and transform. This kind of writing is particularly significant for the present moment, where civilization has come to a crossroads. The excessively mechanistic, materialistic, consumerist ways in which we have been living are no longer working. If we cling to them too steadfastly, as many insist on doing, we will suffer unnecessarily and humanity will not survive. If, on the other hand, we can adapt and find ways to live sustainably and compassionately, we will stand on the threshold of an exciting new era of human development.

The positive, transformative potential of stories compels me to write my own.

It may be naive to expect that any story could change the world, but, in the end, it is only stories that do change the world.