Idea #65 — Collage a Character

Another way I’ve found to delve deeper into a character or setting or situation is through the use of pictures or images. I love doing this and have had some “ah-ha” experiences, but I’m a shy and messy artist. I have to keep reminding myself, we’re not making Great Art here, we’re using images to provide another window into our work.


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Place as Memory — Writing the Geography of Our Lives

“Memories are rooted in place: a lifetime of kitchens, backyards, porches, and patios. Our bedroom and our best friend’s bedroom, the street where we played until dark and our parents called us inside, the park where we picnicked, the swimming pool with its aquamarine water smelling of chlorine or the pond on the farm with its muddy banks. If you want to enter a memory, enter a room in your grandmother’s house. Remember an incident, and the place where it happened will figure prominently in the story. Everything happens somewhere, and if you want to bring the memory alive, be in the place where it occurred.
garden cottage

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How is writing a novel like growing an ear of corn?

I wish I had a time-lapse camera attached to my kitchen faucet. That way I could catch the day-by-day growth of the corn in my neighbor’s garden. Every morning over the last couple of months, since he planted his garden, I’ve watched the corn inch its way higher and higher toward the sky. This week, after being away for several days on a writing retreat, I swear it’s as high as an elephant’s eye.

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