Let's Talk About Writing

by TerryWalstrom 2 Replies latest jw friends

  • TerryWalstrom


    For me, writing is sort of like Jazz.

    Writing is "thinking inside the moment".
    Improvising and surprising an audience--is good jazz.

    Have you ever heard "bad" Jazz?
    Ha ha ha--of course you have!!
    That's like asking--"Have you ever read BAD writing?"

    Great writing is seduction!
    Seduction is offering an exciting stimulus toward a satisfying response which teases your inclinations to enjoy life more.
    Who doesn't crave that arousal?

    (Arousal is a magical word--don't you think?)

    Don't we often associate jazz with seduction?
    Let's say "yes" and see what that means.
    The excitement of seduction is partly being off-balance and putting you on your toes (or your back).

    Not really knowing where it's going...is arousing...moment to moment...leading someplace that might just be wonderful.

    (Note: This is still about writing--so, calm down!)

    When you first meet somebody on a blind date--that's like picking up a book for the first time. Those first few seconds should make your heart beat a little faster.
    A smile? Yes! (Opening paragraph)
    Appearance may be pretty important--but wait!
    "Don't judge a book by its cover" is good advice.

    Listen first.
    Listen for that seductive tone...is there insinuation toward sweet surprises?

    A good writer grabs you with a little humor (to break the ice) and a welcoming smile (an inviting setting) followed by that elusive miracle: a CONNECTION!

    A terrific writer establishes the electrifying moment of connection in a literary 3-way menage a trois:

    1. Your mind and your body
    2. Your body and your desires
    3. Evocative words as a gateway to the first two: imagination.

    Writing is background music for "possibilities" and as you enter this new world and explore its frontiers you are taken out of yourself in a good way.

    50 Shades of Gray sold 125 million copies in a genre where 40 thousand copies are considered a triumph.
    Here is why, in my opinion. That rather shabby book was all about Seduction

    Everybody wants to lose control and turn it all over to somebody else more powerful who can turn the pain into orgasmic pleasure.

    And guess what?
    A 2nd-rate writer achieved that. (Even a cheap thrill is still a thrill).
    Here is a secret: there's no such thing as a good writer or a bad writer--there is only the
    EFFECTIVE writer and an INEFFECTIVE writer.
    Many a man has said, "There's no such thing as bad sex".
    What the man means is "effective" sex. (FEELING IT).
    A writer offers an Uber ride to someplace you want to go where you'll experience BIG FEELINGS.

    That's worth the ride--no?

    When I write, I'm thinking out loud RIGHT NOW.
    I don't prepare a damn thing. I hear it when you do--for the first time. That's pretty much the only way I can write.
    It's the most surprising and satisfying way to find out
    what I'm thinking. Because you see, I don't know what I think until I write it down.

    Often I'll do that and then read it, turn up my nose and delete it.
    I post it publicly and later take it down--I hate it.

    Spontaneity is the only writing that works for me. I actually FEEL what I'm writing--or I don't.

    All the other kinds of writing don't interest me.

    Your mileage may vary.

  • Wasanelder Once
    Wasanelder Once

    I agree that the story and characters have their own life and it is discovery to write. This unfortunately doens't make it good in and of itself. Often it can lead to self indulgence. A good writer has at least some sense of his reader, and the ability to self edit to a degree, while writing. Unlike jazz, it is the rewriting where the magic comes together.

    My main reason for not liking Jazz is that it seems self centered. Clearly the performer is enthralled with being a virtuoso and this leads to self indulgence, the artist assumes it is great because it keeps going. Similarly some writers confuse verbiage with quality. Thanks for a stimulating thread.

  • TerryWalstrom

    Excellent point! Self-centered writing keeps the reader on the outside of the experience.

    If it isn't important in Value to a reader--it isn't important enough to read (no matter how much I felt it while writing.)

    How do you write "valuable" things others will read and feel as strongly as the writer?
    Be entertaining. Surprise them. Build an expectation which changes how they think by challenging (but not threatening) their viewpoint.
    Become a tour guide to your experience through empathy, vicarious role play. Let the reader walk in your shoes for a few minutes. Make it a thrill ride or a guilty pleasure--but make it funny or sad in a real and sympathetic surrounding.

    Words are music if you play the melody in them.
    For me--it's Jazz. If my reader taps their foot--my writing is sweet music.
    "Welcome to the Sing-Along."

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