PDA

View Full Version : Can you be too attached? Warning: There may be Spoilers



One Day More
2005-Feb-02, 04:05 AM
I read. I'm a bookworm (half a bookworm anyway). I admit it, school diverts me from reading, as does the computer!) But I was curious to know when others think when being attached to a fictional character is getting a bit serious (or the reader just has a couple bolts and nuts loose!), and how much attachment is fine.

For example: If I was reading a book, and a significant character dies or has to make a tragic decision, I cry little. It's not that I don't care about the *fictional* character's ultimate fate at the end, but it's that I know they're fiction period. But, I would know I have something wrong with me if I cried copious amounts of tears for days on end (which I've never done over a book). Okay, fine if an event happens that may have triggered something in the old unconsious part of the brain, such as a death of a loved parent or friend; a terrible disaster (please, we already have a tsunami thread-keep it there, thanks), or something just as tragic.
But what if the copious tears for days on end have *nothing* whatsoever to do with memories? Well, I believe there is a screw loose up there, and you may need a bit of therapy...
I never cried when Beth died in Little Women for some reason, but that's like me with practically every book anyway...guess I'm a reality girl! ;) I save barrels of tears for greiving lost ones, and Leavers' Masses at school.
Oh heck, did I make sense? :oops: :-?

Missing words and incorrect tenses make a world of a difference.

Edited to put in spoiler warning-thanks SciFiChick! :)

Musashi
2005-Feb-02, 04:46 AM
I have read a few books that left me in a funk for a couple of days. There have even been one or two that made me cry or at least feel like I wanted to cry. Usually, it isn't just the character's fate, but a more general sense of tragedy from the events in the books that got to me.

sarongsong
2005-Feb-02, 05:44 AM
...Oh heck, did I make sense?...
Perfect. Eric Clapton once revealed in an interview his musical goal was to find the one note that would bring his audience to tears. Have you ever read anything that provoked tears of laughter?

Musashi
2005-Feb-02, 05:47 AM
I have been reading some Neal Stephenson recently, and he has an interesting way of putting words together that can be tear-makingly funny (to me).

TriangleMan
2005-Feb-02, 11:37 AM
Good literature, like music and art, is supposed to invoke feelings in the reader. That is what makes a book great. I don't see any difference in crying over a tragedy in a book compared to crying watching Bambi, they are both fictional works that elicit emotions.

Normandy6644
2005-Feb-02, 01:32 PM
Have you ever read anything that provoked tears of laughter?

Motherless Brooklyn by Jonathan Lethem. Read it last week. Cracked me up nonstop, even on a plane!

Edited to fix quote error.

Wally
2005-Feb-02, 01:47 PM
What?!?!? Beth dies in Little Women??????

THANKS ALOT NZ!!!! [slams down book. . . storms off to find something else to read. . .]

:lol: :wink:

SciFi Chick
2005-Feb-02, 02:00 PM
Wow. This brings back memories of a certain Friends episode.

Joking aside, someone should put a spoiler warning in here for the young people who haven't read Little Women and don't want it ruined for them...

gethen
2005-Feb-02, 02:08 PM
I have read a few books that left me in a funk for a couple of days...
I've had the same experience, usually when reading something about some universal tragedy (Earth Abides, Alas, Babylon) that leaves me with a sense that it's really happening and I'm depressed until I realize what I'm doing and get back to reality.

And any kid reading Little Women who can't see that Beth is headed for some dramatic death isn't paying attention.

kucharek
2005-Feb-02, 02:18 PM
I have read a few books that left me in a funk for a couple of days...
I've had the same experience, usually when reading something about some universal tragedy (Earth Abides, Alas, Babylon) that leaves me with a sense that it's really happening and I'm depressed until I realize what I'm doing and get back to reality.
Works the other way round for me. I'd really like to experience to be one of only a few people on earth. Never understood why Robinson wanted to leave his island.
I like some company, but I can do pretty well without. Most social interaction bores me to death. A few good friends I really care of and who really care about me is all I need.

Harald

gethen
2005-Feb-02, 02:22 PM
...I like some company, but I can do pretty well without. Most social interaction bores me to death. A few good friends I really care of and who really care about me is all I need.

Harald
Oh, I agree with you there. I cherish my time alone and have a small circle of good friends. I hate parties unless they're mostly close friends and family. What I'm referring to in the books though is a sense of doom--a plague will eventually get us all, nuclear fallout will finish us all off in time.

space cadet
2005-Feb-03, 03:12 AM
I laughed when bambi's mother died. I hope that doesn't mean I'm a sick person. It's just that the storyline is so willfully ignorant. The way the forest was portrayed was laughable to anyone who has taken a high school ecology class. But in Bambi's world, life in the woods is a bed of roses and all the little animals love each other. Only Man is the villian in the black suit. In the real world it just doesn't work that way.


Maybe I'm just not the sentimental type. But then again, I always cry when I read Where The Red Fern Grows.

One Day More
2005-Feb-03, 03:54 AM
Have you ever read anything that provoked tears of laughter?

Motherless Brooklyn by Jonathan Lethem. Read it last week. Cracked me up nonstop, even on a plane!

Er, some quote mislaid here-I didn't say "Have you read anything...tears of laughter" but oh well. Yes, definitely-there were some books that would crack me up so much I end up crying from laughter and being inflicted with a stitch in my side.
That always makes my day.

NASA Fan
2005-Feb-03, 04:38 AM
I agree, that there is nothing different about crying over a character dying that you have spendt hours and hours reading about than there is crying over something in a 2 hour movie.

One Day More
2005-Feb-03, 04:52 AM
I agree, that there is nothing different about crying over a character dying that you have spendt hours and hours reading about than there is crying over something in a 2 hour movie.

I agree as well. In the film Bicentennial Man I always cried when [certain character] dies. She was so sweet, sniff :cry: But also I cry randomly in film (1994) Little Women: it may be when Beth sees her new piano, or when Meg has her babies...it's random for some reason! :-?
But in Firewing-and I'll say who dies as I assume none has read Silverwing and Sunwing and probably wouldn't want to coz it's about bats-when Shade dies for his son, I cried for a few minutes because in the first two books I just couldn't help but care for that character.
Please tell me if it's safe to still put in who dies, or just delete the spoiler about who dies in that book anyway....
I've written an actual book, believe it or not, but I'm waiting until I'm older to try to publish it, and the ending-despite the fact I did the book-always makes me cry. Happy tears that is :). Besides the ending of my book gives me a sort of warm feeling, or I'm just sentimental about my first book :lol:

Edited to add some more comments: As for the cartoon version of Lion King, I always felt sad when Simba's daddy IIRC dies. Someone please remind me what happened, I think daddy lion fell or something? Grr, hate my memory! :evil:
I'm also reading a series Guardians of Ga'hoole and have only read the first book: Capture which had some pretty moving events in it. Kathryn Lasky, IMO, is quite a talented and able author who can weave her readers into her book like few other authors can. Sorry, JK Rowling, but after Order of the Phoenix, I just can't take anymore of Harry Potter. No arguments. [-(

Normandy6644
2005-Feb-03, 05:47 AM
Have you ever read anything that provoked tears of laughter?

Motherless Brooklyn by Jonathan Lethem. Read it last week. Cracked me up nonstop, even on a plane!

Er, some quote mislaid here-I didn't say "Have you read anything...tears of laughter" but oh well. Yes, definitely-there were some books that would crack me up so much I end up crying from laughter and being inflicted with a stitch in my side.
That always makes my day.

Woah, I'm not sure how that happened! Sorry! I will fix it.

TriangleMan
2005-Feb-03, 11:55 AM
As for the cartoon version of Lion King, I always felt sad when Simba's daddy IIRC dies. Someone please remind me what happened, I think daddy lion fell or something?
Trampled in a stampede of wildebeests. He tried to jump up an embankment/tree to save himself but Scar pushed him back.

Bawheid
2005-Feb-03, 12:28 PM
Good king killed by evil brother who usurps throne and exiles young Hamlet? :D

Wally
2005-Feb-04, 02:15 PM
Good king killed by evil brother who usurps throne and exiles young Hamlet? :D

wait a minute. . . Are you suggesting Shakespear plagerized!?!? 8-[ :P

Bawheid
2005-Feb-04, 02:17 PM
Nah, they both stole it form the writer of The Sopranos! :o

skrap1r0n
2005-Feb-04, 03:30 PM
I get attached to characters to the point where I hate it when I finish the series. One series in particular "A song of Ice and Fire" by George R R Martin has me really attacjed to the chars.

Makgraf
2005-Feb-06, 01:41 AM
One thing you can do with spoilers is place [ color=white ] and [ /color ] around the word (though no spaces between the brackets in reality). That way people can highlight it if they want to read it (Like this). I hurridly llept the mouse down to avoid finding out who dies in Firewing (I enjoyed the first two) but I guess I was warned by the the title. :) [Edit: Wow that really doesn't work. Ignore everything I said up here]


I like some company, but I can do pretty well without. Most social interaction bores me to death. A few good friends I really care of and who really care about me is all I need.
Reminds me of a quote by US Federal Judge Richard Posner (http://www.iconservatives.org.uk/richard_posner.htm):
[O]n the whole, Posner prefers to avoid social life. "People don't say interesting things," he says. 'A lot of socializing is just dull - I'd rather read a book. I have a friend, an economist who's Swedish, and he told me that Sweden has terrible television, so people there spend their time visiting each other. But that's worse, because when you watch television you get some information, you even get some moral instruction, you learn to be nice to single mothers or what have you, but socializing, particularly family - well, that is deadly. When you're just talking with your friends about trivia, what's the point?"

Sever
2005-Feb-06, 02:31 AM
Well, On The Beach usually depresses me. :)

Reacher
2005-Feb-06, 07:04 AM
Yeah, On The Beach has the same effect on me...

While reading The Wrong Boy by Willie Russel (Just before clicking "submit" I remembered that it's Willie Russel, not Willie Nelson. #-o) I remember that I cried, for what reason and in what part I cannot remember, but I definately cried.

Mr Gorsky
2005-Feb-07, 12:26 PM
I laughed when bambi's mother died. I hope that doesn't mean I'm a sick person. It's just that the storyline is so willfully ignorant. The way the forest was portrayed was laughable to anyone who has taken a high school ecology class. But in Bambi's world, life in the woods is a bed of roses and all the little animals love each other. Only Man is the villian in the black suit. In the real world it just doesn't work that way.

Yeah, but Bambi was aimed at young children who, by virtue of being young children, haven't taken High School Ecology classes.

Wally
2005-Feb-07, 12:36 PM
I get attached to characters to the point where I hate it when I finish the series. One series in particular "A song of Ice and Fire" by George R R Martin has me really attacjed to the chars.

Yeah. . . and then he goes and kills them off!!! :evil:

electromagneticpulse
2005-Feb-07, 12:44 PM
I occasionally shed a tear for dying characters but that usually only happens with TV programs as it's not i've spent a couple of days reading a book it's i've spent a couple of years watching it.

I always find it disconcerting when i'm willing a character to die in a book, it sounds mean but when they're evil it's not so bad :)

Gillianren
2005-Feb-08, 02:41 AM
okay, funny family Bambi story before I move on to the actual topic.

my grandmother took my aunt Susie to see Bambi when it first came out. (not sure how old Aunt Susie would've been, but pretty young.) and, of course, we get to the climactic scene, and my aunt Susie wails, "I don't want Bambi's mother to die!"

and the guy in front of her sniffles (he was somebody's dad, apparently, and in his maybe thirties), and says, "darn kid." (btw, Ted Nugent says he gets really annoyed when people cite Bambi to protest hunting, because everyone knows the hunters used every bit of Bambi's mother.)

so anyway. I cried at the end of Sourcery, by Terry Pratchett, when Rincewind got blasted into the Dungeon Dimensions. I cried at the final episode of Quantum Leap, when they said Sam never went home. (and my mother said, "it's only a TV show." grrrrrr.) in fact, there are some books/movies/TV shows where I always cry, no matter how many times I go through them. (sure, I'm manic depressive, but I'm not 100% sure how relevant that is.) and I agree w/whoever said that that was kind of the point of really good literature, etc.--to make you feel.

what I have told my boyfriend on this subject is that, whenever two or more girls start discussing movies, you've got about a 50% chance of it devolving into what movies you've cried at the end of. (Finding Neverland, for example.)