Monday, July 2, 2012

a little thing I like to call talent

Because this is a holiday week, I'm not much in the mood to talk about crafting...except to tell you that maybe, sometimes, you're a lot smarter than you think.

I'm teaching a class right now called Journey Steps, a no-frills guide to plotting.  And believe me, when I say it's no's no frills!

I tell each person in the class after lesson 2 or 3 to go into his or her WIP and look for the action/reaction/decision sequence. Even if they've never heard of this sequence before, most will find it working (and working well) in their manuscripts.

I like to call that talent. Instinct. :) There's a part of us that kinda sorta already knows to do this. We don't need to be "taught" just reminded.

Same is true for knowing when a journey step (which is a step in the hero or heroine's journey) needs to be an entire scene, a few pages, or maybe just a paragraph or a sentence. As I say in the workshop, if we're with the hero as he fights a barn fire do we really need to take a walk through the charred ruins to know his horses are dead?

Probably not.

But...the very fact that our instincts tell us to just give the journey step as a succinct sentence is yet another proof of talent.

We may struggle sometimes with whose POV to use for a scene or what the heck should happen next, but when we're cooking that stuff just seems to come out of thin air.

And in the end, our books work.

So since this is a holiday week and we all should be taking a break, appreciating our kids, our country, our spouses...let's also take a second or two to respect and appreciate our talent.

It's not easy to write books. If it were, everyone would be doing it. (Well, in this day and age of self-pubs a lot of folks are!) But not everyone is...So thank God for your country, your kids, your spouse and add in a thanks for your talent.

Give yourself that little bit of recognition!

Happy Monday!


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