A friend of mine was revising her memoir and one issue in particular was nagging at her when she finally called me and asked for advice: she'd titled some chapters and not others and now found it disconcerting. Her question: (1) Should she leave it as is? (2) Title all chapters? Or (3) remove the titles and trust the reader to enter into the writing enough to know what the chapter was about, literally and symbolically?
You already know my answer, I'll bet. It's #3. Trust the reader. Let your writing be fluid and speak for itself. I didn't come by this advice totally on my own,however. I'd watched "So You Think You Can Dance?" the night before and remember hearing the advice: don't let the steps get in the way of the dance; you need to have the technique, but not so much so that we're watching the individual steps and not experience the dance.
Whether you're dancing. Or singing. Or writing. The key is to let your art flow out to your audience in a fluid, inviting manner. We've heard people make comments like, "her writing is self-conscious; his style feels like he's trying to show us how much he knows and it feels distant."
We don't want to see your blue eyeshadow; we want to see your beautiful brown eyes! That's both a metaphor and an actual observation! - ps
Welcome to Pat's Place
This is the kind of place I'm lucky enough to enjoy every day, a place to think and write and talk with friends. I hope you'll join me here often, posting on my posts, letting me know what you think, what you believe, what makes you laugh or smile or cry. What makes you angry. Let's share thoughts, rant at the world's randomness, explore issues like karma, destiny and past lives, and literary ones, like what we're reading and how in the world writers create conflict in fiction. It's all up for grabs. So, what's on your mind? Post comments.
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