Fantasy Dollars

If you’re going to get some money in the future and you’re spending it in fantasy, you can buy lots of things. All of the choices exist in fantasy.


I’m going to receive a thousand bucks. Yay! I want a thousand bucks. I can get a couch and a fairly nice one. I need a couch, and it would be nice to have a place to sit and read other than my work desk. I can also save it, invest it, or pay off debts. I could buy new shoes, do the brakes on my car, or replace my ancient snowboarding boots. In fantasy, all of these things are somewhat done. In my head, now, while I don’t have the money, after I get the money, all of these things are accomplished because they could be.

I can’t do all of them. It’s only a thousand dollars. But emotionally, all of them feel like they’re done because in the fantasy, they’re all possible.

When I actually get the money, I’ll do one of them. And then the others won’t be done. They won’t be viable possibilities anymore. I won’t think of getting a couch if I pay off the credit card; I won’t imagine getting comfortable boots if I get the couch, and the car’s brakes can go a little bit longer. It just shimmies, just a little, under heavy braking.

All of those undone things go from being possible to impossible, because after that check drops and I spend it, they’re no longer possible. Getting the money means losing possibilities. Perhaps it would be more accurate to say spending the money means losing possibilities, but either way, those possibilities get lost.

This is how writing feels to a lot of people, myself somewhat included. Before the book is written, when it lives in my head, it’s a romance, an adventure, a message, and a saga. After writing, it’s…just this. Maybe it’s good, maybe it has a romance, maybe it’s many things to many people, but it isn’t all the possibilities it could have been before being written.

This is how money works, and is one reason why rich people don’t think they’re as rich as other people think they are. Because if you’re looking at a rich person or imagining a bank account, you’re in the realm of possibility where could buy a jet, a mansion, pay off the debts, or build the stock portfolio. In fantasy, you could do all of those things. But when the person with the money does one of those things, they spent the money. It’s gone. The jet OR the mansion OR the debts OR the portfolio, or, or, or exclusive, are now not possible.

What do you do?

Write more books. Earn more money. Because as long as more is coming in, the possibilities are real.

Accept humility? Enough may never be enough?

Give up fantasy?

That’s one of the great questions.

My thousand bucks exist in fantasy anyway.

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