The reasons for this blog: 1. To provide basic author information for students, teachers, librarians, etc. (Please see sidebar) 2. I think out loud a lot as I work through writing projects, and I'm trying to dump most of those thoughts here rather than on my friends.
Friday, March 23, 2012
I passed by the TV as Harry Potter 2 was on, and it was the scene where Harry and Ron are in the forest with the giant spider. I paused for a second to watch it, because I suddenly noticed that it was one big dumping of plot information, given by the spider to Harry. That was the main way the scene moved the story forward: Harry had to get ___ info from the spider character.
So I was thinking, if you're writing from scratch and you've got a spider with ____ information that your MC must have, then you don't have to make your MC go into the forest. The spider could show up anywhere, or somebody else could know what the spider said and pass it on, or the info could come across in some magic way, etc. etc.
Now, the thing I've always noticed before about this scene is poor Rupert Grint having to make scaredy faces the entire time. I always think, Wow, his face must have gotten tired. But this time I was thinking, that's what gives the scene its tension. Ron is scared of the massing spiders, and his fear and the growing danger we see are what's ramping up the scene while while the plot info is being dumped on the reader (and Harry).
Honestly, if I were writing this, Harry probably would have just gone and talked to the giant spider and it never would have occurred to me to have more spiders closing in on Harry and Ron. At most I might have noticed that the giant spider could decide to eat the boys, and he might have chased them out of the scene. Maybe, if I was having a particularly good and open-minded writing day. But by g*d, I need to start being able to think like this thoroughly and at will. I can't afford to keep not having this type of option on the table, writingwise.
Somehow I need to figure out a way to practice it so my brain gets used to it. I need to wear a pathway along these particular synapses. Even with un-worn synapses and without even really having a clue what I'm doing, I can spot two places in my ms right off the bat where my Harry goes into a forest and just gets his info then leaves.
Maybe I need to tape a picture of a spider to my computer. Or get a spider tattoo on the back of my hand so I see it while I'm typing.
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