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  1. #1
    filling some space UnitOfPopulation's Avatar
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    Default Fact & fiction enjoyment survey

    I was browsing thru wikipedia as I usually do, and I stumbled upon some fascinating pictures of Cardinal-nephews . Nice clothing they had. It's like an entirely different world it was 300 years ago. I got almost this fantasy-like sensation from the dresses they wore, transferring me to a world of mystic phenomenons and the great unknowns. That's how the world seemed to open to the people hundreds of years ago, and that's a feeling I like a lot when I play fantasy games, watch fantasy movies etc..
    See, reality can be just as fun as fantasy. Can it?Fact & fiction enjoyment survey-cardinal-priest-jpg

    I immediately remembered one of my friends who wrote an email to us gaming folks, writing about how people should do everything in the real world instead of with computer games. Bit of a joke, but he had a message in it. He urged us to replace car simulations with driving, strategy games with planning our life's strategy, war games with history books, fantasy games with learning from the nature, financial games with managing one's own finances.

    I don't feel that the reality can usually be "played" to such depth as games, and I feel the usual concrete immediate reality offers inadequate stimulation for the mind. I feel I must supplement the immediate reality with learning facts and concepts from everything else, and by immersing myself in an imagined world, from time to time. I would need pretty optimal stimulation from the real world to be content with that and not having to read papers, watch movies, etc..

    This must be something that depends on personal experiences, and perhaps, type.
    Edit: revised first question. Is this any better?
    How would you describe your feelings about factual and fictional information, like history and a fantasy world?
    Would the time spent in fiction be better used in the real world?
    What is it that makes people drawn to fiction?
    Do you enjoy fantasy?
    Do you enjoy reading non-fiction?
    Do you enjoy watching the news and keeping track of current events?
    What would your world be like without fiction?
    Do you think that facts and fiction are on equal par to entertain you?
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    Last edited by UnitOfPopulation; 10-24-2007 at 08:39 AM.

  2. #2
    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
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    To some extent, I think both are necessary. I think people should read history books and manage their finances, certainly, but I don't think that doing those things necessarily excludes games as a form of entertainment. Games might even help to develop skills that help in dealing with reality in some ways.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Vortex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Santtu View Post
    How do you experience fact and fiction, in short?
    Would the time spent in fiction be better used in the real world?
    What is it that makes people drawn to fiction?
    Do you enjoy fantasy?
    Do you enjoy reading non-fiction?
    Do you enjoy watching the news and keeping track of current events?
    What would your world be like without fiction?
    Do you think that facts and fiction are on equal par to entertain you?
    To answer your questions:

    I like facts, but left on my own I'll prefer fiction. I have much more fun living in my own head, with my own rules than outside it.

    People are drawn to fiction to escape the real world for some amount of time. It's a break from reality.

    I do enjoy fantasy. Very much, in fact.

    I also enjoy reading non-fiction if it's well written. Popular science magazines, historical topics, biographies (arguable if that's non-fiction), newspapers, nutrition information...I'm the kind of person who'll consume any and all words in the vicinity and will try to read the newspaper of the person opposite me upside-down in the train if I have nothing to read myself (obviously not in any way letting them know that I'm doing it).

    I detest watching the news. I seldom do it. I like it when I do, but I get way too aggressive and fall into bad moods for several days after. I like to choose what to know (like a newspaper), not being forcefed information like the tv does. I'm usually up to-date on current events, although some things may pass me by entirely.

    My world would be sad if it had no fiction in it. But to me, this is a pointless question, since there will always be stories and adventures in my head, unless I had those surgically removed. That would make me another person entirely, and I have no idea how that person would respond to not having fiction in her life.

    I don't think fact and fiction are equal in entertainment value. Fiction always wins.

  4. #4
    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    How do you experience fact and fiction, in short? I'm not sure I understand this question.
    Would the time spent in fiction be better used in the real world? For some people it might.
    What is it that makes people drawn to fiction? It is an escape.
    Do you enjoy fantasy? Yes.
    Do you enjoy reading non-fiction? If the subject is of interest to me.
    Do you enjoy watching the news and keeping track of current events? Sometimes.
    What would your world be like without fiction? Bleak. I wouldn't want to be in it.
    Do you think that facts and fiction are on equal par to entertain you Not even close. Seriously, Tolkien or the CNN? I demand Hobbits!
    “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”
    ~ John Rogers

  5. #5
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    I think good fiction is informed by reality, and good reality is driven by the aspirations that can be found in fiction.

    I'm not sure they are really inseparable, or that fiction can be labeled as "That Which Is Not True" -- since the best fiction is true in all the Deep Ways.

    As far as personal preference? When I was younger and I was developing my imagination and expanding my world, I had much more a penchant for fiction. Nowadays most of what I read it "reality-based books" in order to fuel my internal creative eye.

    As far as the pics go, many computer artists are SP types, and they're scanning the past for images they can incorporate in new ways in the present. This shift towards SP "sensation" thinking in the United States is one of the more positive aspects of the late 20th century, but sometimes it can become rather mindless -- basically just cloning and shifting around the puzzle pieces without an underlying coherent strategy of new pictures that can be put together.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  6. #6
    4x9 cascadeco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Santtu View Post
    How do you experience fact and fiction, in short?
    I'm not sure I know what you're getting at.


    Would the time spent in fiction be better used in the real world?

    'Better used' in comparison to who, or on what value system?

    If one thinks ones life should be measured in tangible things, and 'making a difference', then sure, my time could be 'better used' in the real world, with people, and with things, rather than ideas or fiction.

    Personally, I try to balance it all out. I don't think there's anything wrong w/ indulging in fiction for an hour or so each day, but I also want to be present and active in the world around me - so I definitely also value being with people and experiencing and doing things in the here and now. :-)

    What is it that makes people drawn to fiction?

    I'm not sure! I've just always enjoyed reading, and it brings me a lot of pleasure. 'Escaping' to fantasy worlds, getting acquainted with characters...

    Do you enjoy fantasy?

    Yes, definitely. Growing up I read Anne Mccaffrey, and of course LOTR. :-) In recent yrs I've stumbled upon Robert Jordan and Terry Goodkind. I also like several of your more old-school sci fi books.

    Do you enjoy reading non-fiction?

    Occasionally I do. I read a lot of philosophy yrs ago, as well as history. I have read some more evolution/biology-type books as well.

    Do you enjoy watching the news and keeping track of current events?

    No, I do not. It affects me emotionally, and I easily get depressed/irritable, so I don't follow it often.

    What would your world be like without fiction?

    Hmm. I can see it two ways - without fiction, I wouldn't get to experience the creative worlds authors have created and brought to life, and I find a lot of beauty and truth in many of the books I read. So I feel like I'd be missing out on a lot. Fiction also brings such rich characters to life...and to a depth that is harder to find/reach in real life.

    I also like a lot of your 'classics', and I think you can get a good idea of the social structure/values of a certain nation and period just by reading the literature from that time -- so perhaps a richer, more personalized insight into history, vs. pure facts.

    But without fiction, I'd be forced to do something else with my time, so I might get out more. :-)

    So I could 'make do' without fiction and no doubt I'd find other stuff to grab my attention...but it sure wouldn't be very fun!!!

    Do you think that facts and fiction are on equal par to entertain you?

    For 'entertainment', it's only fiction for me. 'Facts' I see more as learning, and while I really enjoy certain non-fiction subjects, I wouldn't equate them to entertainment.

  7. #7
    Senior Member prplchknz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Santtu View Post
    I was browsing thru wikipedia as I usually do, and I stumbled upon some fascinating pictures of Cardinal-nephews . Nice clothing they had. It's like an entirely different world it was 300 years ago. I got almost this fantasy-like sensation from the dresses they wore, transferring me to a world of mystic phenomenons and the great unknowns. That's how the world seemed to open to the people hundreds of years ago, and that's a feeling I like a lot when I play fantasy games, watch fantasy movies etc..
    See, reality can be just as fun as fantasy. Can it?Fact & fiction enjoyment survey-cardinal-priest-jpg

    I immediately remembered one of my friends who wrote an email to us gaming folks, writing about how people should do everything in the real world instead of with computer games. Bit of a joke, but he had a message in it. He urged us to replace car simulations with driving, strategy games with planning our life's strategy, war games with history books, fantasy games with learning from the nature, financial games with managing one's own finances.

    I don't feel that the reality can usually be "played" to such depth as games, and I feel the usual concrete immediate reality offers inadequate stimulation for the mind. I feel I must supplement the immediate reality with learning facts and concepts from everything else, and by immersing myself in an imagined world, from time to time. I would need pretty optimal stimulation from the real world to be content with that and not having to read papers, watch movies, etc..

    This must be something that depends on personal experiences, and perhaps, type.
    How do you experience fact and fiction, in short?
    Would the time spent in fiction be better used in the real world?
    What is it that makes people drawn to fiction?
    Do you enjoy fantasy?
    Do you enjoy reading non-fiction?
    Do you enjoy watching the news and keeping track of current events?
    What would your world be like without fiction?
    Do you think that facts and fiction are on equal par to entertain you?
    1. I experience it more if it has something I can relate to whether it's a character or an event (is this what you meant?)
    2. No, you need both
    3. It's not real, it can seem real but it's often romanticized. Also it's an escaped.
    4. Yea
    5. Mostly especially if it's a biography or something interested like WWII (not the combat but rather something about society at that time (Pink Triangle is a good one, as isTrains by Mirriam Winter. Also I loved My Moab is my Washspot Stephen Fry.)
    6. I have a news feed and sometimes I'll read the headlines. And I use stumble upon and sometimes find out current events that way, but I don't think I'm that informed about the world around me.
    7. It would suck.
    8. Of course, I've read bad fiction and I've also read bad non-fiction. And I've read both good fiction and good non-fiction.

  8. #8
    Senior Member TenebrousReflection's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Santtu View Post
    This must be something that depends on personal experiences, and perhaps, type.
    I will be interested to see if there is or is not a correlation to type regarding this. (for purposes of statistics, please consider me as INFP)

    Edit: revised first question. Is this any better?
    How would you describe your feelings about factual and fictional information, like history and a fantasy world?
    Facts tell us what is and was. Fiction tells us what could be or could have been, it speculates on the unknown and the uncertain. To me, fiction has the value of stimulating my intuition by adding new ideas to what could be or what could have been as well as usually providing a story that may be a metaphor with greater meanings. Fiction can be the shell by which something more meaningful is conveyed and made more interesting, and sometimes it can simply be entertainment or intellectual stimulation.


    Would the time spent in fiction be better used in the real world?
    Only if you have things that need to be done and pursuit of fiction is preventing it.

    What is it that makes people drawn to fiction?
    Stimulation of the imagination. (can only speak for myself there)

    Do you enjoy fantasy?
    Yes

    Do you enjoy reading non-fiction?
    Yes

    Do you enjoy watching the news and keeping track of current events?
    I get my news from sources like The Daily Show, and The Colbert Report, so yes, I combine entertainment with information to stay informed. If I feel those sources have not giving me the full picture, I may seek more depth from a source like MSNBC or NPR but I will not get much enjoyment or entertainment from those pursuits.

    What would your world be like without fiction?
    Very dull.

    Do you think that facts and fiction are on equal par to entertain you?
    Maybe. Facts by themselves are not very entertaining, its the method in which those facts are learned that can be entertaining. For instance, one of my favorite television shows is "Myth Busters" which is fact/science based but they present the facts in a method that is both entertaining and informative. Other examples of this are shows like "Digging for the Truth" and "Ancient Discoveries" History (facts) can be a source of entertainment, but the presentation is the key to making them be that. Fiction is not limited by facts and it can use whatever ideas it wants to tell it's story and be entertaining, so I think its easier for fiction to be entertaining than it is for facts to be entertaining, but its not a guarantee that fiction will be more entertaining, just that it will probably be easier to find entertaining fiction than it is to find entertaining fact.

  9. #9
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    How would you describe your feelings about factual and fictional information, like history and a fantasy world?:

    Fiction that closely parallels reality, extrapolates from the present a possible future and alternate history is interesting but total fantasy like LOTR and Star Wars bore me.

    Would the time spent in fiction be better used in the real world?:

    I'd rather learn about the real world than waste time in someone else's imagination.

    What is it that makes people drawn to fiction?: Meh.

    Do you enjoy fantasy?: No

    Do you enjoy reading non-fiction?: Yes.

    Do you enjoy watching the news and keeping track of current events?: Yes.

    What would your world be like without fiction?:

    I'd be out a few interesting ideas but no great loss.

  10. #10
    not to be trusted miss fortune's Avatar
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    yeah- I tend to read for the sake of gathering information that could be useful to me! I try and read something that's not non-fiction every day in hopes that it may balance out the vast quantity of news and boring academic works though! Usually that's something more along the lines of Fairy Tales or something though (yeah- somewhere deep down inside I guess that I'm not purely evil!)
    fiction is necissary because reality sucks!

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