Saturday, March 18, 2017

Keeping Our Writer's Eye Sharp

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

As writers, one of the things we do best is notice and record the world around us. We see people, situations, and things with a different sort of vision. How do you keep your writer's eye sharp?

Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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  1. I've noticed that the more I get into God's Word, the better I see the world from His perspective. And I see a greater need for showing the world there is hope. People are good at putting on a facade of happiness. But God exposes their underlying hurts and fears, giving us an opportunity to offer messages of positive expectation.

  2. The most fascinating aspect of my college experience was was researching experiments on perception and the unreliability of eyewitness testimony. As humans, we may see the same situation, but we then apply our interpretation - we add spin, attribute motives, lose sequence of unfoldment, add depth, even confound all efforts to get to the truth. Our challenge as writers is to describe, convey, entertain, tease, etc our readers. We mus "show" a mother's love, a spark of humanity in a heartless criminal, weakness, strength, growth, something we might otherwise have missed. Bring the power of a character or a scene to the forefront. I'm finding that doing this well means I must fine-tune my own seeing and hearing. And never dial them back or turn them "off." Reading new writers and attending workshops help keep the receptors honed. Jay Wright

  3. I've been loving Instagram for this purpose! With my iPhone camera, I'll capture some detail of my daily world, something I might have otherwise overlooked. It keeps me ever on the lookout, hones my focus, and encourages me to form my innermost feelings into shareable ideas.

  4. Someone once told me that we notice only what our brain filters in. Those filters are shaped and influenced by experience and education. I believe what I have to do to become a better writer is to spend more time contemplating my life as I live it, become more cognitive of what is going on under the surface of life, and put more effort into observing things. To become more insightful I need to talk about life with others, discover new and different ideas, and live life fully. I think as a writer I tend to internalize and suppress thoughts when I fail to write them down, so I should really write them down AND talk about them with others. Doing this, capturing truths and noticing my surroundings will benefit me as a writer.