Thursday, February 5, 2015
Strategy # 8 Hidden Secrets
Build Your Story: 8 Strategies for Writing Innovative Setting with Impact
“You don’t need a one-eyed, foul-breathed monster with a rusty knife, or an indescribable something (covered in slime), to conjure up terrors in the human heart.” Sarah LeFanu
Folktales, fairytales and legends hold a repository of universal shadows. Just as settings can be a link between internal and external ‘soul’ language, so does this literature connect our personal fears and shadows to find our way through darkness. They offer a childhood’s nightlight to all ages. We may not all be afraid of the same things but we connect with the heart pounding, dry mouth sensations when we see them.
It’s most often in the ordinary world that psychological fears can wreak havoc. Just the slightest noise or silence that is out of sync causes us to pause and listen. As pain is a warning that something is wrong physically, so fear warns us of danger. Our intuitive radar activates. The ordinary world holds all our secrets that we like to keep in the dark until a situation reveals them.
Memory holds our emotional reservoir, both personal and public. Some memories are buried so deep that we don’t recognize them when they echo in the present. We have a fleeting pang or touch of comfort, and wonder why. What can happen to our secrets when our memories are erased or distorted?
Put yourself or your character in a situation where time has stood still and the world moved on. What has been lost? What has been gained?
Choose one memory that you would want to be able to guarantee remembering? Do you choose a comfort, or a warning? Why? How will it impact your story?
Share: Why did you make that choice?
Read deep, marcy