Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Ears to Hear

Yesterday we went on a walk.  Usually I have an audio book but I had returned my last one to the library and didn't have time to look for a new one.  Currently my MP3 player only has my son's bedtime music on it so I went with nothing to listen to.

Truck boy was ensconced in the stroller and, as always, was enthralled with the world around him.  He pointed out everything he saw.  And I mean everything.  Trees, birds, clouds, geese poo on the road.  He imitated every sound he heard, birds, trucks, planes.  He loves sound and will mimic everything he hears including the vacuum and the mixer.  I saw the world through his eyes and ears and began to notice things I saw so often I never really looked, or listened, to them anymore.  I tend to be a finish line oriented person.  I know what I need to do, and do it, so I can move on to the next thing.  During that walk I was reminded that I need to see my surroundings.

I'm not good at world building in my novels.  Like in life I tend to see the finish line and forget to stop and get to know the world my characters inhabit.   It's absolutely necessary to not only know but communicate the sights, sounds and smells of a story.  If you want the reader to come back, to feel at home in your story there must be somewhere for them to stay.  So, like on my walk, in my writing I need to open my eyes and ears and become aware of the world surrounding me.

11 comments:

  1. Oh that boy is my type of kid! I mimic *everything*! LOL! Just try to get me to stop. ; ) Good post, SP

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  2. Thanks, it was something I needed to learn.

    Are you planning on getting to the stone mountain scottish games this year? Maybe we can finally meet and you and Truck Boy can have fun imitating the bagpipes. :)

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  3. Oooh! We've wanted to go before and were sick. I'll have to put it on the calendar. What are the dates?

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  4. "If you want the reader to come back, to feel at home in your story there must be somewhere for them to stay." Awesome way to put it.

    We learn a lot when we look through a child's eyes.

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  5. Quite often when I'm out walking I'll stop and close my eyes for a moment (making sure that I'm safe first) and just listen. The most amazing things come into focus.

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  6. Zan, it's usually in October but I haven't looked up the dates yet. We always go on Saturday.

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  7. Ruth, Thanks.

    My son is a continual surprise and joy to me. I learn so much from him. Even when he picks all my green tomatoes and throws them away (he thought he was saving the plant) and locks me out of the house. Three times.

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  8. That sounds fun, I'll have to try it. Stay safe.

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  9. Love the three times locked out! It pays to have a sense of humour huh?

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  10. Yes, it does. It also pays to always carry your keys.

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  11. Ooh, I could use him! And you, Zan Marie :-) I see and hear things but... Just not enough, it seems. Description is not my strong point, I don't think.

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