New Year, New Direction

I started this blog for a couple of reasons. I felt I needed something where I could share my thoughts, but not with so much depth as The Grove of Quotes. Also it was made to accompany me through my work through OBOD‘s Druid grade (third and final grade that I started a little over two years ago). Now I’m coming to the end of the course I can reflect a little on where this blog has been and where it will go.

This blog has helped me express some thoughts I encountered in the course, sharing ideas on learning and creating languages, sharing other creative endeavours such as art and stories, and so on. And I shall carry on, but my focus will be changing. The course is ending, but the process of becoming a Druid is just starting. I have aquired the tools, now it’s the time to apply them in my life. For that reason “druid in training” is still apt.

In the new year I’ll be starting a course in Ecopsychology (Mika has just finished it) and we’ll be do more activities combining art with ecopsychological insight (Ecoart workshops). We’ll also be working with CEN (as mentioned in a previous post) and continuing our development of a sustainable ecological project, and so taking my druidry into action.

Happy New Year!

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Reading and Writing Novels

Doing the Novel Writing course with the London School of Journalism has been very interesting for me; I’m going through a step by step process, learning some of the technical bits of writing stories (the imagination part, the story and its background, I have no need to learn about, lol), how to use the words, how to “use” the characters and situations to explain bits about the world and the story. It brings its own challenges too.

I like dialogue, and I like action, to read. Description of scenery and people I don’t like because part of the magic of reading, for me, is that I can fill in the blanks*. Often a book will describe something but my imagination has already decided what something looks like, and I just can’t shake it off and replace it with something I’m reading. What I’d skip in some books I’m trying not to put too much emphasis in my own writing. Each writer has their own style.

*description of a world in a sort of historical-cultural overview is a different matter.

Background or Story?

That is the question!

What’s more important in fiction writing, the background or the story?

I have to confess that I find it much more interesting to build up a whole world, inventing places, peoples, religions, creatures and societies than I do writing the actual story, which can often seem laborious. So whilst writing a story I could easily get sidetracked into explaining the world which my characters are moving around in.

But that’s the challenge if I am to write a novel: how do I keep the story flowing and yet also introduce the context without interrupting the flow? The trick is to do it in little bits so that the reader can build up a fairly comprehensive picture and just keep the characters doing stuff and talking.

And if there’s so much information about the world that I can’t share it all in a novel I can always add it as an appendix a la Tolkein, or even write a special encyclopedia for it! lol