Wednesday, August 9, 2023

 The Melody of Words

Introducing Method Writing

           A few months ago, the Writers Guild had a session on story structure that used music to explain and illustrate the use of beats in structuring a story. At that session, we said the story is music: a melody with a cadence where a ballerina pirouettes on the scene and goes through a series of choreographed steps (BEATS) and at each step, presents a well-disciplined form that holds our attention throughout the song. I don’t know much about music, but I think that was a pretty good analogy. It certainly helped me better understand the beat structure of a story. So let’s exploit that idea as we begin our study method writing.  

In The Beginning

           A melody might begin with just a single note. The sound of a drop of water falling into a pool. Or maybe just a sound of two objects clinking together: an accident. Somehow, the sound in the artist’s ear resonates with a place in his memory and he feels something. He doesn’t know if it’s good or bad, but he’s curious, and searches for a mate to that single note. A natural pair is coaxed into being, perhaps by the feeling, curiosity, or even through trial and error: pecking the keys of a piano. The third note is added, then another, and another, and a melody begins to play in his head…

         The melody, even in its infancy, mirrors the unique personal traits of the artist who composed it, including his temperament, perspective, and emotions. Regardless of the art medium, the creative process yields a similar outcome. For example, in writing, the authentic voice of the writer is like the melody of a song. 

 Writing About It

           Authenticity is about being true to oneself and expressing one’s thoughts and feelings in a genuine and sincere way. This can be difficult, especially in a world that often values conformity and uniformity over individuality and creativity. Yet, it is precisely this individuality and creativity that gives writing its power and resonance. When a writer is able to tap into their authentic voice, they are able to connect with readers on a deep and meaningful level, transcending the boundaries of language, culture, and time.

 Completing the Song

            The simple melody is not a complete song. The artist selects and applies a key that determines the specific pitches, chords, and cadence to add intensity and depth, giving the song its unique tonal characteristics.

           The writer adds structure and style suitable for the genre shaping the prose with diction, verbals, adjectives, and any number of literary devices.

           There’s a remarkable similarity in the genius of creativity and despite different techniques for each craft, the work of each artisan, whether it is a symphony or a novel, always carries their authentic voice.

           Finding one’s authentic voice is not always easy. It requires a willingness to be vulnerable, to take risks, and to be open to criticism and feedback. But the rewards are great: not just for the writer, but for readers as well.

            In the end, the authentic voice of the writer is not just like the melody of a song; it is the illuminating spirit of prose and poem. It is the thing that makes writing come alive, that gives it meaning and purpose, and connects the writer to the reader in ways that are both profound and enduring.

           Method Writing is an approach to writing that emphasizes bringing realistic and emotional authenticity to the scenes portrayed in the prose. It requires writers to delve deep into the psyche of their characters, drawing upon personal experiences and emotions to bring forth truth and authenticity. Finding one’s authentic voice is the first step in the process.

 Nothing is impossible…  until you quit.     

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