There is a peculiar notion that goodness and morality are boring, and the conflict is necessary to tell a good story. If everyone gets along, then where is the excitement?
To the uncreative authors still stuck in the Patriarchal Storytelling vortex, they see the world through the eyes of hunters and don’t see the obvious.
Matriarchal Storytellers, on the other hand, are the gatherers who see the big picture, and what they see is a new world of goodness and happiness that has excitement, thrills and a mother lode of unexplored stories.
The problem with the Patriarchal is that its structure allows for a single point of view: that life is about war. It is about fights and obstacles, and once you have become the victor, there is nothing more to tell. It is the last word on who is better than whom.
But that also hides a secret fear: that the post-victory life of a hero isn’t all that great, and that is the reason we hide it.
But the Matriarchal has no such fear. Fables from Paradise are exciting in their own right because there are other ways to live one’s life other than picking fights with everyone whose life requirements differ from your own.
The fruits of cooperation gives the Matriarchal Storyteller fodder. There are still things to do and things to learn and discover. We can have fun connecting to others as do things together as equals.
When I began A Dangerous Woman, I didn’t just want to write stories about conflicts: I wanted to write unconventional stories with no villains or battles. I found them easy enough and learned that Happily Ever After had excitement and unpredictability in a different way.
The novella The Future According to Hammond Hughes is a case in point. Hammond gets along with his wife Verity who is his best friend. They are very different people, but that is no obstacle to their exciting and blissful marriage, yet they still learn new things about each other and themselves. They find challenges to face together and grow even though there isn’t a villain making trouble for them.
We also see the couple get along with their in-laws, their neighbours, and their relatives. Verity and her sister Holly aren’t rivals tweaking each other’s noses. They are each other’s confidantes and inspirations. Hammond isn’t jealous of his wife’s career: he is her biggest supporter just as she his biggest supporter, but that’s not the focus of the story: they get together to see if they build a machine that is decades ahead of its time.
That’s right: they can have adventures without fighting with each other or other people, but they aren’t perfect. Their lives are idyllic and clearly in the realm of peace, but that doesn’t mean it is boring. There are twists, turns, and even shocks just like a conventional Patriarchal story, but with the Matriarchal, we can finally have the courage to move into the realm of Happily Ever After. It is a world to embrace rather than fear, and it is one ripe for exploring.
There are other series under the Silliosity banner at A Dangerous Woman, from The Tuesday Night Beading Club, Carnivalia, The Whimsy’s Monster Show, The Birch Tree Science League, The Hughes Boys, It Must Be Sunday, and the upcoming The Promises of Theodore Nathaniel and The Hughes Girls. There are no shortage of interesting stories we can explore without the traditional assumption that antagonism is the only spice in an author’s rack. It is but one and the Matriarchal gives us the means of spicing up our stories without the incessant bitterness overwhelming the story.