Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Author as Sculptor

“. . .it's when an author is a master sculptor of these ideas, rather than a cut-n-paster, that a story becomes a more worthwhile read than the next one.” Colin Meldrum on the Six Questions For blog.
I’ve never thought of writing in this way, but it makes perfect sense. A writer is like a sculptor, taking a shapeless block of an idea and turning it into something a reader finds beautiful. I don’t mean beautiful as in romantic, or pleasing even. I’m talking about writing that draws the reader in and takes her for a ride that ends too soon. It’s writing that uses language in a fresh way, avoids cliches, and creates a new sense within the reader. I’ve spent a lot of time lately with my fiction, examining the verbs and nouns used. There probably have been times when I’ve overdone the writing (the last story I submitted ended with “His heart winced”), but it’s been an interesting exercise in exploring the language I’ve used--at times poorly--all my life.

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