"Better a dish of illusion and a hearty appetite for life, than a feast of reality and indigestion therewith." ~~Henry A. Overstreet
I have to agree most days.
I'd rather deal with illusion than jump into an unhappy reality. Although I will admit my own personal reality is not that bad. We have our ups and downs, our problems as a couple and as a family. But for the most part, we're happy. In a general sense, we are where we want to be in life. We simply do our best, rely in faith, in each other, and everything seems to work out for the best. Eventually. ;)
But when I read for pleasure, I'd rather have the illusion. Oh, sure, I want the essence of reality with a good mystery -- a murder or two -- a frightening character who goes 'bump' in the night. Afterward, I need the happy ending. The 'happy ever after' we grew so accustomed to in modern fairy tales. I say modern, because we all know those characters in the Grimm versions rarely lived on...let alone happily.
That's also how I prefer to write. My characters may go to hell and back -- even literally -- but the reader always knows that somehow, somewhere, they will persevere and beat the demons. Yes, those can be literal, too ... depending on the story.
So think about it -- which do you prefer? Happy illusion or sour reality? Which do you prefer to entertain yourself with?