Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Show Not Tell

I apologize for the prolonged absence. I am sorry to inform you that I've been spending all my time with another blog. Please understand that just because I now have not only one, but two new blogs, it doesn't mean I love you any less. You were my first, and you will always have a special place in my heart, even though I may not get to spend as much time with you.


Non-Smoking Status:
Quite good, actually. I've only had two packs of cigarettes in three weeks. But, having negative dollars in my bank account kinda helps, you know, in those "hmmm, do I eat today, or buy a pack of smokes?"

Novel Status:
Also quite good. 41,440 words. Yes, the numbers are dropping again.

I've taken dozens of creative writing classes, seminars, and workshops and been teaching creative writing for 16 years. I've been writing poetry for 24 years, short stories for 20, screenwriting for 10 and now a novel for 2.

And a lightbulb just went on inside my head. Unbelievable.

I've been preaching the SHOW not TELL mantra for years. It's an important one. Especially, in poetry where people tend to write these unbearable "My soul lives in a dark, eternal abyss" poems. Yeah.

I've always been able to catch the "telling" in other's work, and fought against it in my own. But for some reason, maybe just repeating the mantra so many times, I now see it more clearly in my student's work, the novels I read, and best of all - my own work.

The latest rewrite of the novel feels so good, because I'm taking away all the talk and replacing it with image. A lot of this "lifting the clouds" I attribute to reading many, many 1st pages posted over on Ms. Snark. And also reading a bunch of middle grade novels.

Okay, pushing on. It's crazy. I'm producing a film festival in 5 weeks. Baby comes home in 2 1/2 months. We get to move May 1st. And I've scheduled my book tour for September/October. Really! It's on my calendar.

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