Saturday, November 08, 2008

Snapshots of gold

Do you remember your first Christmas away from home?

Do you remember your high school graduation ceremony?

Do you remember the day you said"I do"?

How did you feel spending that first holiday without your parents--were you lonely, or sad or excited to be with someone else or someplace new?

How did you and your best friends say goodbye after you threw your cap in the air? Did you wonder if you would ever be so close again?

Do you remember the feel of your wedding gown as it brushed against your leg when your father walked you down the aisle--or the last hug your mother gave after she adjusted your veil?

Snapshots. Our memories are filled with photo albums of captured moments.

When I choose a short story, I pull a single snapshot from my album. Then I study it from every angle diving through the lingering emotions and moods, sifting until the fine memories rise to the top like gold.

Then I write from my heart until that memory comes alive once again.

How do you write your own stories that make the reader feel?


Angie Ledbetter said...

Delving in to past emotions or long ago conversations, or even imagining myself right there in a scene as a participant or observer helps. Also, pretending I'm seated in a dark theater, watching my story unfold on the big screen. What do I want my readers to "see" as they watch (read) too? Nice post!

Renee Collins said...

I don't write short stories often, but if I did I think that looking at a snapshot is a great start. Pictures can conjure up memories in all five senses.

Anonymous said...

Lately I have been writing short stories for my lessons. I am use to writing longer pieces. I sit quietly for a while, listen to my heart, look at the things around me, remember what makes me smile or brings me to tears, and then I begin writing. The story may be inspired by a certain time of season, an upcoming holiday, or just something I am experiencing that week.

Donna M. Kohlstrom said...

When I look at one snapshot a whole series of snapshots flash through my mind like a slide projector. Lingering on each one, I try to recapture the moment and use the picure, emotions and stories that come with them to incorporate into the story I will write.

Sassy Granny ... said...

My attic is packed with memories of such. There are stored dollies and doilies, tea cups and tears. I visit it often, and more and more I write of it. It's a favorite retreat, and with age it is is no longer a haunt or a bore.

He has truly worked everything together ...


Jessica said...

Very interesting. I don't write short stories but to bring up emotions, I'm not sure what I do. I guess if I don't have the same experience as my characters, I imagine how they'll feel.
And hope that is translated to the reader. :-)

Kasie West said...

I try to make sure I let the character feel. Sometimes, I get embarrassed because I am really not a mushy person, but I have to remember that emotions are real and people (even fake people) are allowed to have them. So I try to be true to my character in every given situation and leave my own feelings out of it. :)

Kathryn Magendie said...

Somehow it just comes up... I never know the story until it's out. So,I sit down, with just maybe a phrase, character quirk, image, something like the flash that happens before the snapshot completely develops, and I start writing to find out what's behind the blur.

Leaders In Learning said...

Wow, Terri, you are so good. Now you have given me so many more things to write about! LOL. Everything you say is a snapshot of gold. I loved reading the tips left by other bloggers too. Lots of great input.


Robin Lambright said...

Most of the stuff I have writtten in the past have been devotionals. I am currently working on a book about living with rebellion, there are so many times when I am reading the scriptures or having my prayer time when a thought will come into my head and then I just know that I need to power up the laptop and get to writing!

My goal is to put togeter a devitional book as well as finish my book on living with rebellion.

Great post, writing can be such an act of opening ones heart to others (how scary is that!) it helps to get ideas and encouragement from whereever you can find it!

Rick said...

I do remember my first Christmas away from home - it was at my in-laws house. They celebrated Christmas so differently. But in time I figured out that the way they did it wasn't so bad.