Friday, October 4, 2013

Writer Realization #1

So numbered in case of future, bloggable realizations. Not because it was the first ever.

Good Friday,

A very short piece of writerly advice for the weekend. I need to get back to the thesis. The countdown began a few weeks ago. Less than 200 days till deadline.

Filtering. My mentor hammered the ultimate filtering lesson home for me this week, and here I will try to convey it. Many things with writing, for me, have crested over my awareness like a wave. This was one of those things. It just hit me, and I got it.

Two types of filtering I already knew about.

-Sensory filters – sensory words that pull the reader away from the character
He saw/heard/felt/smelled/tasted

-Thought filters – thought-related words that pull the reader away from the character
He thought/imagined/remembered/believed/any variation of these

I’m going to call the new one I learned this week general filtering – sentence construction that takes the reader away from the character.

Sentence with filter: “He couldn’t understand it.”
Sentence without filter: “Understanding eluded him.”

Sentence with filter: “She would never get there in time.”
Sentence without filter: “There was no time.”

The non-filtered sentences aren’t the only possible rewrites. They’re just there to get the point across. Take filtering out of your pros, and the emotions come through a million times stronger.

Now, go forth and create noteworthy prose.

See you next week.

@desantismt on Twitter

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