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Wednesday, November 4, 2015

The Skill of Seeing

It's IWSG Wednesday.  To read more posts from writers helping writers, click here.

I went to a book reading two weeks ago and one of the featured authors was Annie Weatherwax, whose first novel All We Had, was listed by Opra, and is currently being adapted for a film directed by Katie Holmes, who will also star in it. (Gulp, gulp, gulp!)  Annie is an inspiring speaker, and I started this post by trying to tell you her whole story, when I discovered that Annie tells it best herself, here.

Please click on the link, but if you don’t have time, then at least take these words away with you:
…But the true job of a writer is to elicit an image—a rich and expansive picture of the world written on the page. In many ways, writing is a visual art because we see not only with our eyes, but also, and sometimes more powerfully, with our imaginations. The craft of writing for me has less to do with the study of literature, or even with writing proficiency, and much more to do with the disciplined skill of seeing... Annie Weatherwax.
Suddenly, I think I have a clue why taking pictures is so important to me...

15 comments:

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

A visual art - yes, that does make sense. Might take a thousand words to paint that picture, but we try.

Starting Over, Accepting Changes - Maybe said...

The imagination can paint the clearest images.

mshatch said...

That's what I love about the best books; they immerse you so much you can see what the writer is describing.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Sounds like an a-ha moment for you and your photography. :)

Joanne said...

excellent quote and when I reflect on favorite books or authors, they are the ones that paint the best picture - scenery, characters, etc.

Robin said...

When I'm knee deep in the writing part of the story (not the editing, like I am now) I find myself writing in my head about everything I see as I go places. Even rather boring places like a doctor's office. But, when I do that I know I'm in the throes of it. The writing and the seeing.

Feather Stone said...

Well said. The trick is to ensure the dear reader sees the image clearly, and becomes enraptured as passionately as I.

Nicola said...

I love listening to experienced writers visions for the craft. I particularly like Annie's viewpoint - it's real and honest.

Nick Wilford said...

It's not always easy to do but creating a rich picture with words is definitely one of the joys of writing.

Lisa said...

I copied this quote onto a post it on my computer for inspiration. Thank you for sharing that with us. I love stories like this, a writer helping other writers without even knowing it...

Karen Walker said...

Ah ha!!

Stephanie Faris said...

So true...and how great that Katie Holmes is getting into directing now.

David Emanuel said...

That's a great perspective.

I usually think of my writing as being about a character and a problem. But the reader certainly needs to see the world.

Dave
Dadswithoutballs.com

Jan Morrison said...

Went and got lost in Annie Land. Thank you for this wonderful link.

Carol Kilgore said...

I agree about the imagination being powerful. Go take some photos!