How to Unstuck Your Story

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outline

I hate outlining

It was incredible. Two steps to the left in Lane 32 and I was out of the gutter.

Mind you, I move with the precision and grace of a mudslide,  yet those steps made all the difference. I actually got three spares in a row. (A lifetime bowling achievement. I may retire in glory now.)

Remembering how changing angles at the bowling alley was a literal game-changer, I tried the same thing with a research question for my day job. I began by Googling the obvious key words and only found what I already had. Then, I decided to take two [metaphorical] steps to the left and come at the search from a fresh angle. My little snow peas, I could not believe the great stuff I found. It answered my question and much more.

Also related to perspective, when I watch movies I can get distracted as I wonder how the camera person captured a particular shot. Where were they exactly? Under the water? On the roof? In the floorboards? Filming a scene from just the right angle is pivotal to conveying the story. Imagine James Cameron opting to create Titanic with the exclusive use of close-ups or if Greta Gerwig directed the film crew for Lady Bird to shoot each mother/daughter scene in wide, aerial views. Pish posh on those perspectives!

All this to say, in my experience, when it comes to unstucking a story, it can be as “simple” as shifting your perspective and peering at it from a yet-to-be-explored point of view. (This, from the writer who is drafting her first novel in third person. I love it! I mean, she loves it!)

Children’s author and writing teacher extraordinaire Sarah Aronson offers these gleaming quick tips to help you get your manuscript out of the mud.

SarahAronsonWritingTip

(“Quick Tips for Writers!” is shared with Sarah Aronson’s permission. Just so you know.)

I hope this has been helpful, my little rose hips. Let me know your perspective.

A little perspective, like a little humor, goes a long way. ~ Allen Klein, past president of The Association for Applied and Therapeutic Humor. (Yes, apparently, that’s a thing.)

 

6 responses »

  1. Very helpful blog. My son is writing a comic and is stuck – writers block I guess lol – I will share this information with him as well.

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  2. Great post! It’s amazing what a change of POV can do.

    Oh and I totally get distracted watching movies too, but mine is more wondering about things like: how much did that person who had just one line get paid or how do they film a Western battle scene with horses tripping and falling all over the place without any horses getting hurt–is it all computer generated? What did they do before CGI?

    Like

    • I worry about the horses too! But then, I think, it’s a huge investment, so the riders and the crew must take care to protect them, just like they would a stunt person. (Or at least that’s what I tell myself.) Thanks so much for visiting!

      Liked by 1 person

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