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running towards the imaginative: my journey back to play

By S. R. Toliver

I have always loved the speculative: science fiction and fantasy books that took readers to far away futures and imaginary otherworlds, role-playing video games (RPGs) where players could assume the roles of magical characters and journey through enchanted worlds; movies that allowed viewers to remove themselves from their immediate realities even if it was just for an hour or two. There was something special about the speculative, something creative and inspiring that I just couldn’t access with realistic texts. For those brief moments, I could release reality and play in an alternate space where my imagination could roam free without the restraints that come with living in the real world.