Friday, March 29, 2013

One of the tricks in my writer's toolbox

I am more a visual person than a kinesthetic or auditory person, and as I have developed my novel writing skills, the part of my nature as strengthened.

As I write my stories, if I am unable to close my eyes to imagine the scene in its entirety, then I try to use visual aids to help me.  Sadly, I can't draw anything more than silly stick drawings - I wish I could, but I certainly missed out on gaining any talent in this area! So, I am forced to improvise.

One of the way I have found I often use to assist me visualise the stories I'm writing is to find pictures - drawings or photographs - and paste a copy or printout of them in a visual arts book.

For instance, one day I was just idly browsing through a Fantasy Art website to gain landscape inspiration for the story I was trying to write, when I came across a black and white drawing the fantasy artist had done of a male character. This random close-up image by the artist was so close to looking exactly like the male lead character that I had held in my mind for nearing two years it sent chills up my spine, and I couldn't help myself: I just had to copy the picture. I had to keep a copy of my Mason!

It was this picture of Mason that gave me the idea to start collecting other images to help me with my story writing.

Since that day, I have collected drawings and photographs of both weird and wonderful places, and a handful of images that closely (but not as perfectly) resemble my other characters from the different stories I have in the works. 

When I am stuck for words, especially descriptions, I am able to pull my visual arts diary out, flip through the pages, and before you know it I am back scribbling words down on paper or my fingers are desperately trying to keep up with the speed of thoughts and get the words up on the screen without errors.

The last time I came to visit my mum, I went for a walk and came across my idea of a Wizards tree.  A few days before I returned earlier this week, a tornado ripped through this beautiful country area and left a trail of devastation in its wake. On my first evening here, I went for another walk to check on the state of my Wizards tree - because its location was in the direct path of the tornado.  I was relieved to find my Wizards tree still there and without damage - but the trees surrounding it were broken or else looking worse for the wear.  Those other trees had been my Wizard trees buffer against such howling brutality.  I already had a photograph, already firmly pasted into my visual arts diary, for when I one day get around to writing the story with which I will use this perfect Wizards tree in the setting.  But the child in me - the one that loves story's with magic and wizardry - couldn't help but consider that perhaps my Wizards tree had been protected by magic.

Do you use little tricks like collecting interesting pictures to help you in your storytelling descriptions, or even to get you into the writing mood?  Share your thoughts in the comments section!

No comments:

Post a Comment