Love at first sight

“Love at first sight is not complicated. In our dreams we build a woman, we give her life from our own life, and then we have to wait. Through trial and error we try to find that nameless ghost that’s haunting our most lonely of nights. And I felt as if I had found what I was looking for. Finally, my ghost had a name and a face.”

When I set up to write Jazz I wanted to build myself a femme fatale, a woman all men would be inexplicably drawn to. But as the story progressed I realized that, as I was writing from Chris Sommer’s perspective, I was actually writing about a woman who doesn’t exist. His perception is distorted, simply because he adds a name and a face to a ghost he has cultivated over the years. It’s all a mirage. The Amber he sees doesn’t exist.

 “The one you love and the one who loves you are never, ever the same person.” – Chuck Palahniuk

I also thought that a perfect character is not a human character. There’s nothing compelling about the perfect individual, and, in a way, we’re more attracted to a person’s flaws than we are to their qualities. Amber is beautiful. She truly is. And it’s no great secret that physical beauty inspires people. Also, there’s something that gets triggered inside our brains whenever we see a beautiful person sad. We can’t imagine them to be sad, as if the world is doing them a great injustice.

Chris Sommers has built this wonderful woman from nothing. And then, one day, he meets Amber and tells himself, “she’s the one.” All his dreams, all his sentimental aspirations, take the form of this beautiful, young woman.

Love at first sight isn’t just a life altering moment. It takes a lot of time for a hopeless romantic to create his ideal woman. Maybe it all happens on a mere subconscious level, and thus, he’s unaware that he’s just giving his ghost a name and a face.

And it may take a few minutes or an entire lifetime for him to figure out that the person he loves is not the same as his perfect ghost. Unfortunately, some never figure that out. Sometimes, it feels as if love is one of the most persistent of illusions. Or as Chris Sommers himself puts it, “There are certain delicate illusions that make life bearable. Love, in its most pure and pathetic form, the one before we get to genuinely know the person we love, is one of them. Ignorance is bliss, and the less you know, the more you love, the less you have, the more you want.”

***

You can now buy Jazz and the other two novels I released so far (and two short stories and a compilation of essays on art) for only $4.99. Limited time offer.

Buy here.

15 comments on “Love at first sight

  1. Cristian,
    I agree that a perfect character is not realistic. I am drawn to flawed characters. I think they are easier to fall in love with, because you see a little bit of yourself in them… like love at first sight. The imperfect qualities of a character make their beautiful qualities more desirable. We can’t have an up without a down, or light without dark… in the same way, how could we ever know the ways a character is beautiful without seeing any of their human flaws?
    This sounds like an interesting read,
    Reagan

  2. MissesC says:

    Well, I think that I have a very odd idea about love: it is not about me, it is about the other person. So, it does not matter what I imagined or want in a lover. It does matter that I am able to him all of me.

  3. darlingdomo says:

    Beautiful perspective!

  4. Miss Z says:

    Story of my life! Thanks for sharing this post. I’ll take a look at the book. :)

  5. Kris says:

    The quote from Chuck Palahniuk stopped me….thought provoking! As always, I enjoyed reading your thoughts today.

  6. that palanak quote is fantastic.

  7. Brinda says:

    This is perfect. The truth behind that tingle in your heart when you saw that girl across the street or your husband next to you in your bed… :)
    Touched me very deep down.

  8. I think the only way we can truly fall in love is to erase the ghost altogether. We build these ghosts based on who we think we are, and who we think someone else needs to be in order to love us. However, letting go of such false realities opens us up to falling in love in a total and complete sense. We come free.

  9. it’s all about how one pictures it in his/her mind. for me, love which I read in books is the kind I believe in. in reality, it’s delusional.

  10. HeartSpace says:

    I have definitely experienced building up someone in my mind to be something totally different than reality. It’s sobering when it comes crashing down, but now I’m able to recognize true love so much more. Perception is everything!

  11. grecia1503 says:

    I love this post, beautiful perspective

  12. godtisx says:

    You’re such a great writer. I really enjoyed reading this one Cristian. So many true bits.

  13. By showing someone your flaws, you are trusting them to respect you and accept you despite said flaws. That’s why I think a “perfect” person would not be as attractive as someone with flaws. Why would you trust someone who’s perfect if they can’t tell you something about themselves they hide? Would you not feel so inferior to this perfect person? You’d be constantly throwing them up onto this pedestal of “perfect”, rather than doing the respectful thing and treating both the person and yourself as equals.

  14. You, sir, have spoken to my heart. I feel as if you’ve re-routed my love life away from a path of self-destruction. I’m buying Jazz as soon as I finish typing up this comment. It will probably be the last book I read before heading out to basic military training. You’ve also just inspired a topic for my blog. Thank you so much! Cheers!

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