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Wednesday, October 30, 2013

The Writing Dance

Are you kidding me balance?  Moderation? 
I'm pretty sure my dieting habits have challenged your wisdom before.

Ramen noodle lunches and dinners didn't make me gain too much weight in college, but I'm pretty sure I have early onset osteoporosis...  Not literally, though I'm sure there is some health effect on a diet of nutritionally absent foods.

There is some kind of dance to be played with word count and description.  Right now I'm in the 'two left feet' phase. 

I'm a sort of lumbering dancer as it is.  My writing is following the same awkward manner.  I'll get an idea- it's smashing!  Click out some basic storyline- two step, church dance level.  Basically hands on shoulders and slowly spinning in a circle. 

I look up and see fellow authors flipping their story partner over a shoulder and through their legs- doing the 'Dirty Dancing' swan pose and some kind of gymnastic-hip-hop hybrid move...  What the?!?  Your story can already accomplish that?

My story is avoiding eye contact...
As a matter of fact I think my story idea just made googley eyes at a different author- it wants to jump ship! 
I try to throw in a fancy step, but trip on my own feet.  I swear my story just rolled it's eyes at me.  All my effort to make it look better, sound better, and ultimately show more through actions and character development seem to keep the story from faking a twisted ankle in a desperate attempt to escape my clutches, but that's about the best I can conjure right now.

I keep pruning away the "he said..."s  and "this happened"s.  I am attempting to add more character traits and habits that will give life to the individuals.  So far it all sounds desperate.  I'm trying to write a simple story for children who are barely learning to read and starting to feel like I need to enroll in fourth grade in order to learn to write...

The balance of too many words that don't actually provide imagery and fewer words that can paint an idea solidly in a child's mind seems out of reach.

I did go to the library and check out seven different books in the genre/age range I'm aiming for. 
This activity is like attending a professional acne performance and then going home and trying to copy the entire show in front of a half mirror.  At least that's how I feel right now.

I haven't kept up on my drill and practice much this week either.  Research has me baffled.  I swear the stories for this age range are bland- blank- and almost too educational.
When I was a kid I didn't want to read to learn for pleasure.  It seems like an oxy moron. 

I'm aiming for leisure reading early grades, these poor kids are better off reading strictly picture books for entertainment.  The popular chapter book options are pushing social studies and sciences too obviously.  I will refrain from saying too much myself right here, I know the series I'm thinking of specifically is beloved by many...  But, oh my BOREDOM!

I can't aim for that.  I want to attempt that crazy hip-hop-gymno-dance move with my story by finding some kind of balance between word count and imagery.

Right now I have to get my story at least interested in conversation so we can communicate about the complicated steps involved in continuing story development.  Basic dance steps aren't cutting it, I have to up my awkward efforts-

It's gonna be weird and distracting for those who know what they're doing and happen to see my efforts out of the corner of their eye. 

 

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