Writing is hard. In fact, it can be downright impossible at times. There’s always pressure to finish, always questions. Always annoying arguments from your characters, that no one but you seem to believe is real.
The Man Who Invented Christmas seems to profoundly understand that. For Charles Dickens (played by the brilliant Dan Stevens) is having a problem we all face: writer’s block. After the success of Oliver Twist and the failings of three smaller books, he’s in debt, he’s out of ideas, and his publishers want another story.
So he decides to write a Christmas one. But what to write? And his main character won’t appear.
What writer doesn’t have this struggle? Which one doesn’t sit for hours, or stare at themselves in the mirror trying to get the name right? Or who doesn’t think “my favorite author would never have these problems,” which was asked in the movie as well.
When I went into the theater to watch this movie, I knew it was a writer movie, I knew it would have plenty of relatable moments, but what I didn’t know was that it would be that extra push, that extra bit of motivation that I needed to finish my story.
For while this movie was generally a happy one, it also had a profound bit of sadness that I found extraordinary. For it reminded me that, to write a good story, sometimes you have to face and battle your demons.
At the time I was neck-deep in editing my new story “A Rose By Another Name” and the ending was giving me pain. I had written it but I kept struggling with how to fix it, how to make it just right.
And then I saw this movie with Charles having to battle his ghosts and face the question “Can a man like Scrooge change?” For me, it was an entirely different set of questions but they were similar in the one fact, that we both had to struggle through things to attain what we need.
Now I’m not saying that my writing is even close to the caliber to that of the great Dickens. What I am saying is that he is human, just like the rest of us, with the same struggles and problems and writer block too. And I am also saying that after dealing with the ending the night before until early in the morning and then to see this the next day was of far more help than I could have ever thought it would be.
It made me sit at my desk that night and work out the end. I battled through the NightMoors, fought the battle against and came out victorious. It reminded me that all writers have struggles and one should not give up even though it seems impossible at the time.
The Man Who Invented Christmas was not only a great help, so great I may put this movie in my dedications, but it also was a beautiful story of hope and family, love and remembering what was in important in life.
See this movie. See it as a writer to relate and inspire. Watch it as a non-writer to see hope and family portrayed in great amounts (and maybe to understand us, writers, a bit more, eh?)
See this movie because it’s worthy to be watched and enjoyed and especially worthy to be loved. Just like that difficult character or ending. Or just see it and then add it to your list of Christmas movies to be watched yearly.
Have you seen this? What was your favorite part? And if you like this content, please subscribe for more!