Thursday, February 5, 2009

Don't dump the backstory

Friday, February 6, 2009

"Don't dump the backstory." Erica Orloff says that all the time.

Yesterday I had a good day writing. I looked back over a chapter I'd written and found myself saying, "Erica would say, 'Don't dump the backstory.'" I rewrote it in the direct voice of the person (using found letters) and when I was done, I thought I'd had a good day. Thanks, Erica.

I have a feeling about the matter of point of view in stories. It has become the big thing now to change points of view in a novel. There are a few chapters from the first person point of view of one character, and a few from the first person point of view of another character, and a few from some sort of omniscient point of view.

I know the reader doesn't care, but to me that's like playing basketball with the net lowered to two feet off the ground. I like the challenge of writing from one point of view, even if it is the omniscient.

I mention this because I'm working on the third Roy Rogers story. Of course, that story is first person, from Roy's point of view. To tell the story of the woman whose record Roy is reading, I either had to summarize it or have some other way to put it in her voice. Letters were the way.

I believe in writing. I think a lot of writers talk more about writing than they write. I don't look at very many blogs about writing (just as I don't read books about writing).

Even this blog can get in the way sometimes, but I keep it up, almost every day. It is another line of communication.

So that's where I am right now in my writing. Yesterday was a good day. I was pleased with it. Whether or not the words I wrote are ever published, they gave me pleasure. That's my other problem, I guess. I'm not very ambitious at this stage of my life. I love writing and I will keep on writing no matter what.


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