Tuesday, October 2, 2012
Tuesday's Inspiration - A Quote from Pearl S. Buck
Many years ago when I moved from short stories to novels, I began by reading all kind of novels. Pearl S. Buck's were some of the ones I read. I also picked up a book of essays by authors I'd heard of and many I hadn't. In this book of essays I found this quote by Pearl S. Buck.
"Communication important--no, more important than self-expression."
I pondered this for a long time and decided what this meant to me was that when I entered a story I put myself aside. Not that little bits of me didn't end up in the characters I was developing. Many of the major emotions my characters were experiencing belonged to me but they had to be threaded through the character's experiences, not mine. I needed to communicatese to whoever would read the story as intregal parts of the characters' natures.
Easiest done for the hero and heroine but for the villain. This meant having the reader believe the bad guy or gal were people with the same traits as the hero and the heroine. Do I always succeed. Maybe and maybe not. I can only hope to communicate with those reading my stories that the people in my stories have come to live no matter what part they play. That is communicating.
How about you? Are you so hung up on showing you've mastered and excell in all the tricks of the trade that you forget about the real essence of telling a story? Letting the reader into the characters' lives by communicating who and what they are. Using those bits of yourself create ideas that the reader understands without the "It's so because I am the writer and I said so."
Posted by Janet Lane Walters at 9:03 AM
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Oh my, you have a valid point about the characters. I'm sticking this in my head.
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