“Artists are people who are not at all interested in the facts—only in the truth. You get the facts from outside. The truth you get from inside.” --Ursula K. LeGuin

Thursday, February 18, 2021

Write The Music You Need to Hear


“Write the music your inside you needs your outside you to hear.”

--Eric Whitacre

I figure most of you are here because you are either a writer (Isn’t everybody?) or want to be one.


The plethora of bloggers online tells me that people want to write and want to be heard (Read). Yeah, me, included. 


We want our lives to mean something, and we want to contribute something.


Although sometimes we need to write because we need to hear what we have to say. (Perhaps that ought to be private.)


I don’t know if you’ve heard me speak of Morning Pages (Julia Cameron’s term). In her book, The Artist’s Way, Cameron describes morning pages as that writing we do before doing the real work. It is clearing away the static so we can hear the music.


You know, sometimes you write something, and in reading it, later on, you wonder who wrote it. Sometimes you’re proud of it, sometimes you embarrass yourself.


Shit happens.


I’ve heard that there are only three rules for writing.


Unfortunately, nobody knows what they are.


So, there you have it, folks. Make your own rules. Write your little hearts out. It will make you a better writer and a better person. 


Readers do expect something, though, and they have a right to find it. People are attuned to a story, with a beginning, a middle, and an end. Follow the Hero’s Journey, and it will stand you in good stead. I think the concept of the hero’s journey began long ago when a storyteller stood at the campfire with the people eager for entertainment. The hunter who brought home the bacon would get attention, but the one who embellished the story got more. The one who died on the hunt was popular, too, for he met a consequence that didn’t bring home the bacon. The trouble was, someone else had to tell the story for him. That’s where you need a great obituary writer. Gosh, when I think about it, most obituaries I’ve heard were boring. Now, that doesn’t do the person justice. They’ve had a life. They loved, wept, had children, hardships, victories. (Born somewhere, educated somewhere, married, survived by.) I’m feeling sad for them.


People want to hear how the hero/heroine got kicked out of Paradise and had to find herself in the world. He/she had to endure hardships, and the stakes were high, the consequences extreme. He/she would, hopefully, come home victorious and bring honor to the tribe.


This morning, I searched the internet for an eye doctor, and I noticed that I was drawn to the ones that wrote a bit about themselves. I guess I ought to write something about myself on my blogs. I always figured reading whatever I wrote would tell my reader about me. Still, truthfully, I didn’t know how to sell myself without sounding like a moron.