By: Lori Pyne
As I read the news that yet another newspaper is going out of business, I worry. How many newspapers will survive the changes in economy and in technology? Will the remaining newspapers be enough to provide the information needed to have a dynamic democracy? Will the remaining newspapers, with their reduced staff and income, still have the resources to investigate individuals, corporations and governments? Will there be enough newspapers to offer a variety of points of view and viewpoints? Will the new media news appearing on my yahoo, google, blogs, websites be able to offer the depth of coverage currently offered in the newspaper?
Unfortunately I only have concerns and questions but no answers. I would love to hear anyone else’s opinion about this issue.
by Lori Pyne
I knew that studying character and character development would assist with the creation of three dimensional people in my fictional worlds. What surprised me was how understanding fictional characters’ goals, motivations, conflicts, fatal flaws, and so on helped me gain a deeper insight into living, breathing individuals: co-workers, friends, family, other parents on the playground. Real people.
Let me give two examples of writing lessons and how they have assisted me beyond my writing.
During an online class on the differences between males and females, the instructor explained that most men have poor peripheral vision and can focus on something to the exclusion of everything else. There was a discussion on evolution, men being hunters, women being caretakers and how the differences aided those separate roles.
After I finished reading the lesson, I went in search of my husband. I asked him follow me into the office to read an interesting lesson. He rose from his easy chair, stepped over the pile of newspapers at his feet and followed me to the back bedroom. When he finished, he raised his eyebrow. I explained that I now understood that he truly did not see the pile of newspapers that he’d just stepped over. I promised that I would not complain about such future oversights, if he would not feel I was nagging him when I pointed out a previously unseen mess. Mutual understanding was reach and a more collaborative partnership was created because of a writing lesson.
In a workshop on secondary characters, I learned that every character, even the villain, is the hero of his or her story, even if not the Hero of the current story being written and that secondary characters’ actions are motivated by that viewpoint.
So all of the villains in my life: my girlfriends’ ex-husbands, the backstabbing co-workers, the erratic drivers during my commute, all are the heroes of their own stories and view their actions as justified. My outrage is a waste of time and energy. Therefore, unless it is a life threatening or job threatening situation, I have learned to shake my head and go on with me life.
Have any writing lessons helped you in your day to day life or your own person relationships?
By Lori Pyne
When in need of some inspiration, a different perspective, an attitude adjustment, I seek out one of my role models. Marty is 85 year old and has been my favorite lunch date for over 10 year. During that time, I have rarely heard him mention an ailment, unless it is a humorous tale or a workaround to a problem caused by an ailment. After catching up on our family news, I listen to his latest projects: a theater production celebrating the First Amendment, the latest artist that foundation he oversees is sponsoring or maybe the status of an exhibit he is coordinating for a friend.
I have only made the mistake once of expressing my concerns about a man of his years embarking on an undertaking which would take at least half of a decade to complete. He glared at me from across the table. Did I think he should just give up and die? Flustered, I mumbled an apology, saying that I just worried about him overextending himself. He explained that one of the reason he enjoys working with the young artists is that they look eagerly towards the future. Many of his contemporaries only exist in the memories of their past or resentfully in the discomfort of their present. Few look forward with any anticipation. As long as he has breath in his lungs and the energy to rise each day, he will work towards his interests. He has lots of projects he wants to tackle and was thankful for each dawn he was given.
After each lunch, I return with a renewed commitment to my hopes, dreams and passions.
Who or what is your inspiration?
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