But there's a handful of yarns out there where the magic door stays open - or less literally, the magical/fantastic elements become a semi-permanent fixture of the hero's life. So then Dapper McTeen has to defeat the Dark Lord while simultaneously cramming for an algebra test. (See: Animorphs, Sailor Moon, Buffy, Spider-Man, etc.)
Those kinds of stories maybe don't fit so neatly into Joseph Campbell's narrative designs, but I've always had a soft spot for them. Because that's what real life is. No dying alien ever takes the time to write a note saying "Please excuse Hal Jordan from his mission tomorrow; he has to go save the galaxy." That sucker just drops a load in your lap and croaks.
And for most of us, if the giant purple wormhole in the sky is not *actively* spewing out Geiger-esque alien abominations, it is really, really tempting to just leave the spandex in the dryer and try like the dickens to get caught up on e-mails before you have to start fixing dinner. This is why so many of us are rattling around with unfinished manuscripts and lingering guilt. It's not because you're a grown-up and the wardrobe door to Narnia has closed. It's because it's all blocked up with dirty clothes and boxes of unsorted tax documents and that one cooler you're afraid to open because you're pretty sure you never cleaned out the leftovers from last year's 4th of July shindig.
|On second thought, maybe I'll let Mr. Tumnus come find me.|
This is pretty much where I've been at the last couple of weeks. Missed writer's workshop on Wednesday because I had to go give an exam out in Alfred J. Shitkicker County. Missed FenCon this weekend - 8 hours of driving/delivering on Friday, 14 hours of helping a friend move house on Saturday, 10 hours of teaching and tutoring on Sunday. Good chance of missing workshop again tomorrow, because my company is comprised of helpless assholes. It's exhausting and depressing and miserable and I want to go play cowboys-and-frog-monsters so bad I can taste it. (It tastes kinda like pickled boot-leather, if you were wondering.) More than anything, I really, really, REALLY want to finish the first draft of my book proposal before my in-laws hit town on the 13th - to hit Save, turn 30, and enjoy a week of unrelenting Texo-Scottish anarchy with a clear conscience and an empty inbox.
So wish me luck, fellow Fantasians, and the best of same with your own wardrobes, wormholes, star-gates, and time machines. There are wondrous worlds on the other side - we just gotta get there!
Life isn't all fricaseed frogs and eel pie.