How to Revise Your Story

Social Issues

  • Author Chloe Lien
  • Published May 5, 2024
  • Word count 707

What is a story? Is it words? Is it pictures? Is it people?

All I know is that everybody has a different one.

However, each story is connected in some way or another.

And some are invisible until you look backstage. What’s going on that’s not on the stadium being performed in front of the audience? Some things are less obvious than others, and those tend to be the ones we look for less.

I sometimes say (not seriously) that there are two kinds of people: Those who need numbers and data to believe the truth, and those who need stories.

And can you be in both camps at the same time?

I’m a science and genetics enthusiast, my middle school ‘ideal bookshelf’ containing Atlas of Pediatric Physical Diagnosis and Surfing Your Way to Pediatric Recertification. These data-filled books contain pictures and graphs; scientifically impossible to the untrained eye. Particularly coming from the mind of a seventh grader. The images, many of which are of the insides of the infected parts of one’s pelvis or a tumor underneath the skin or the testing of abnormal reflexes on infants, are meticulously taken with the intention of teaching people the medical concepts that isn’t directly shown in the sketched drawings of people. It was like a traffic jam, because you were stuck somewhere in the back behind a crowd of cars beeping your horn because you couldn’t see that there had been an accident up front.

The dependency on the pictures that you sometimes have because your mind insists on skipping over the fine print underneath is an example of something everybody does without realizing it. And that sentence can seem to speak more eloquently than ten thousand mouths, but why is the fine print there? I wonder what their intention was. That kind of curiosity that hides in the back of your mind squished in with hundreds of other curiosities is what is thriving unbeknownst to you, kind of like an overpopulation of a species that we don’t realize is happening, even though us humans were the ones who put the species there to get overpopulated.

Despite having all the data you need in the book, sometimes it was the affirmations being repeated that led to belief. What are the affirmations? That’s what you have to find out. Which was why, howbeit half the bookshelf is filled with data, there is always a story behind everything.

Under your shelter, you need food. You need water. You need companionship. You need kindness. And you need freedom. People will decide what they decide, and even if there is a story behind what they decide, sometimes it has to be let go. Nothing can stay in a cage forever, not even the guilt you might feel when a decision is made you don’t like. Kind of like how bees make honey, and yet we don’t pay attention to every single bee we see on our walk in the park. Life is composed of decisions, but you don’t keep a grip on every single one.

Sometimes things are simple until we decide to make them complicated. Just like right now, I’m about to make something complicated.

I’ve got a story of my own. It’s a bit of a long one, if you ask me. And I was talking about books and medicine and traffic and pictures and bees. So, you probably weren’t trying to figure out my story during this time, were you?

And that’s okay. Assumptions are assumed and thoughts are thought and speeches are spoken. Each and every one of those has a story, and you have to dive deep into the water without being scared of sharks in order to know it. Even if you were scared of sharks, because sharks are like opinions, which will come at you no matter what and you still have to keep swimming. Knowing a story would make things less complicated because they wouldn’t have to be complicated because everybody knew everything. Except that doesn’t happen.

So how do you revise your story?

Don’t revise it.

Keep it how it is and tell it.

I"m a seventh grader in Massachusetts. I'm a polyglot and an American Sign Language interpreter with a genetic interest. I like writing novels, and when I grow up I want to be a geneticist and cure autism.

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