Thursday, January 21, 2010

Read Like a Writer

I know, the title sounds like a bit of advice. It isn't. Right now, for me, it's a dilemma.

I used to turn it on and off, that analytical voice that told me "watch that turn of phrase," or "look how that scene was built." I could let myself sit back and enjoy a book, when I turned off the voice. Now I want to turn it off and can't.

My home town has been battered by wind and rain this week. Tree branches and puddles create a maze to walk through on my way out of the house in the mornings. A head cold hasn't made the mornings' necessary travels any easier. So in the evening all I craved was a book and a cup of tea.

I want an escape from my own misery, into the travails of some distant hero. I want their pain and challenges to make me forget my own. Just for a minute. I want to be a reader, swept away into the author's world. But sniffling as I was I couldn't get the voice to quiet. I wanted to enjoy my experience. But instead I was thinking: "Look at this scene... step by step... the description! I'm terrible at description... should I find a way to integrate it this way?"

It isn't a bad book that I'm reading. It's one that, if I could just silence the Writer-mind I would thoroughly love. And I think that, in being sick, I should be allowed a little silence. I really need the escape.

But no., the whisper of distracting thoughts continues until I set the book down. Again and again the same pattern happens, with me aching for a good read and uncertain how to calm my own analytical tendencies. Suggestions are welcome.

1 comments:

Erica Procopio said...

Ugh! I so know what you mean! I was watching Fight Club last night for the first time. It's a great movie, and I enjoyed it but I think I would have enjoyed it more if I had been able to turn off Writer-Mind. There are certain times when you don't want to be able to figure out the twist with in five minutes of its first introduction. >.<

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