Just the Watcher · 14 October 2023
I am just the watcher when I write stories.
It might seem strange to think about, but I really just record what is happening in my mind when I write stories. I create the characters and put them in situations and watch to see how they get to the ending that I know is going to happen. I might help the story along the way here and there, but for the most part, I just watch.
Which is a strange notion. Think about it. Writers are supposed to be creators. We are supposed to know what is happening when we write. We are supposed to know the story arc before it happens. At least that is what I always thought. Before I started writing much.
When I started writing in earnest, I wrote about stuff that I had already lived. Or at least a fictionalized telling of it. That is what my series Autobiography of a Sixth Grader is. I just tell the stories I remember from my childhood. Of course, I took a lot of literary license writing them, but I still just watched from the comfort of my chair in front of the keyboard. I still just wrote down the story as I watched it unfold.
That is amazing to think about. Not that I am amazing. I am just amazed at my own process. I write some notes about characters. Who is who and what do they do and how many kids do they have and how are they related to other characters. Even what situations they find themselves in. I do not even write all those notes at the beginning. I just write them as I need to remember what I wrote before.
The interesting thing about just recording what I am watching is that I tend to go through the emotions of those I am watching. I tend to feel the heartbreak and sadness. Sure, I get to feel the joy too, but stories are not all just sunshine. They often run the emotional gamut. Which means that my emotions get to run the gamut too. Happiness, sadness, elation, pain, suffering, heartbreak, and on and on it goes.
Which is why it is nice to be done with a story. I do not need to be the watcher for a while. I can just be me again instead of just the watcher. I can just write my blog as I read through and edit my stories. No need to go through all the emotions. Just get out that red pen and start slashing.
But when all the slashing and patching is done, it will be time for another story. It will be time to go back and just be the watcher.
© 2023 Michael T. Miyoshi
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