The Miracle of Literature - Guest Post by Bree Holloway
As I decided to take my customary November internet break this year to focus on my studies as well as some writing for NaNoWriMo, I have the special pleasure of hosting a few wonderful guest-posters and interviews over the course of the month who have graciously agreed to fill in for me while I stay busy. Lord willing, I will be back by the beginning of December, and will then be responding to all your beautiful comments, emails and messages, and get back to posting as per usual ;). But for today, here is a lovely post by the wonderful Bree Holloway. Enjoy!
Last night I watched, for the first time, the movie Dead Poet's Society. Aside from the unavoidable tear-shed (that caught me by surprise), it got me thinking about literature, poetry, art, and that little je ne sais quoi in a few rare works that rakes you in and clutches your heart. As a writers, I know we all strive for that element, and it is often the determining factor in whether or not the book becomes an all-time favorite.
The funny thing is, when that element's been tapped, it makes it easy to forgo the other small flaws in a work. For example, there was a lot of language in Dead Poet's Society that normally would put me off and lower my rating to a degree. When the movie was ended, I had to be reminded by my sister that it was even there, because I was so wrapped up in everything good about it.
We talk about writing from real life a lot here. Being realistic in your work is important in order to be believable and respected as an author. There comes a point, however, where realism is dull and as an audience member, I need something that resonates with me to connect to the work. Writing isn't a formula - at some point, you have to break out of the mold and the rules and the grammar (give that one a rain check) because for the magic to happen, you've got to go further than you originally planned.
I'm not saying there's one sure way set a fire in the hearts of your readers - I suppose it's one of life's mysteries. I'm not even saying you'll know 'it' when you find it. I'm just saying that we can't sit on the surface and write about life the way everyone else sees it. Writing takes work (don't we know it); it's a constant struggle to see the world from a different angle. Even if your stories are simple, you've been gifted with a unique perspective - so use it for heaven's sake!
(You may need to stand on your desk to get a better view.)
"In every work of genius we recognise our own rejected thoughts: they come back to us in a certain alienated majesty." -Emerson
Tea & Bree. Because let's face it - who's story is short enough to sum up in a bio?