books|manic pixie dream girl|movie|ruby sparks|writing

Writing on Film: Ruby Sparks and the Manic Pixie Dream Girl

Last week, a customer asked me what the difference is between Fiction and Non-fiction. (Surprised? This happens more often than you’d think.) The easy, mnemonic device to remember this is “Fiction is fake,” and that’s what I told her. But that’s not really what I believe. I think Fiction is often more real than Non-Fiction, because Fiction allows us to explore the mind, motivations and reality of another person. Maybe the character isn’t real, but, in a well-written story, the experience is. In fact, that experience can feel so realistic that we sometimes have trouble separating it from actual reality.


Enter Ruby Sparks, a movie about the blurry line between fact and fiction. The basic plot is this: A writer has trouble writing (I can relate). He has trouble finding love (um, again … I can relate). One night, he has a dream about a girl, and when he wakes up and writes it down, he can’t stop thinking and writing about her. He’s obsessed with creating, and he’s excited about writing again. And then he’s super freaked out, because this girl he’s been writing about — this Ruby — shows up in his kitchen one day, cooking him eggs.



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