When you like something, you tend to recognise it easily. Lovers can sense their other halves by presence alone. Your favourite singer’s voice still sounds the same over the years, even as it diminishes in power, the vibrato slowly weakening. An author’s words has the same nuance and cadence even when in print, even when exploring different genres, even when under a different name. There’s something about the things you love that you just can tell, that’s so easily recognisable – and as well it should be.
For me, the easiest things to recognise are my favourite authors and artists. I like them for a reason, and when those reasons stay the same no matter how many pieces they put out, they’re in my good books for life. John Connolly’s wry storytelling is unmatched. I say this all the time to anyone who will listen, but I am constantly salty about how Neil Gaiman’s lesbian fairy tale from two years back was applauded with mad fervour and yet nobody bothered to be excited about Connolly’s biracial gay assassin couple; Angel and Louis have been in the Charlie Parker books since the very first one back in 1999 and I have heard not a single peep about it. Not a single one. Biracial gay assassin couple. Neil Gaiman is overrated and people need to stop hyping him up so much.
There, I said it.
I did end up thinking about it for a fair while. How is it so easy for us to recognise the things that we love, the traits and characteristics of our favourite voices and words, cadences and expressions? Is it different from the love we feel for an important person? How do we distinguish between love for an object – a feeling, an emotion, the sound of a person’s voice, the rhythm of a person’s words – and love for a person? I have an entire list of online writers that I religiously check up on every six hours or so, just to see if anyone’s updated any of their stories. On the wondrous days that there’s an update, I literally fall to my knees and sing my praises to the heavens. I don’t do that for my parents.
Come to think of it, I don’t think I’ve really ever loved anyone the way I loved words.
But maybe that’s a discussion for another time.
I’ve always admired those who loved passionately, be they material objects or treasured souls. I know what it’s like to live life without passion, to wander unseeing through empty days, and so for every day I wake up itching to see what’s new from my favourite authors and game companies and singers and musicians and artists, I give my thanks to the heavens.
It’s another day worth living, and that’s always a thing to be grateful for.