Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Writing is Description

So if you had to describe something to a person who has never experienced it...

My daughter is in Thailand on exchange until June. (Yep, that's her above with the wonderful people who are caring for her this year.) But she is telling us about some really intriguing experiences. Like the time she was taken out for a fancy dinner and duck feet were the featured delicacy. Nope, not kidding! (She said they are bony and rubbery, by the way.) She couldn't bring herself to actually eat a duck foot because she could only picture little duckies paddling around a pond. LOL! I'd have had the same trouble.

Our exchange son from Japan (here until June) is trying all sorts of new foods too. Each time he tries something new, I imagine him explaining it to his family overseas. He loves my cooking :-D I think I'll be sending him back 20 pounds heavier. He's astonished by how much food Americans buy when they shop. He stared at the grocery store and said, "Wow, there is so much beautiful food here." He stood rooted to the spot inside the door as he slowly swiveled from one side of the store to the other.

They've been able to verbalize new experiences to us in very humorous or dramatic ways. I'm learning that the communication is the art to feeling their experience and awe.

As a writer, I relish watching and hearing the adventures. I realized tonight one very important thing...

My characters have to experience their lives in my stories in this fresh, new way. They need to be seeing, feeling, and exploring new adventures. Then they have to share those adventures through reaction.

Can you just imagine sitting at the table in a fancy Thai restaurant with my daughter's first duck foot? Can you see the disbelief on my Japanese son's face in the store?

Please come visit my personal blog for a contest today:-) I'm giving away the book, Splitting Harriet by Tamara Leigh. All you have to do is answer the question at the end of the post. Come on over and set a spell or just take a chance to win a fun read :-) Psst, you'll find the link over on the right side of our blog here.
or click here: Angie's blog


  1. Angie,

    It sounds like God has you on some wonderful training ground to gain some experiences you can draw from. Just savor everything he is depositiy in you. It will come out when the time is right.

  2. Ang,
    Great thoughts and I'll be remembering them while I'm working on finishing my book.
    It's all about the details and getting the reader to feel, hear, smell and taste everything our characters are experiencing.
    Thanks again.

  3. Duck feet, huh? Interesting. And rubbery is just what I would imagine they would be. LOL! What a challenge for your daughter--Not wanting to offend her hosts, yet not wanting to eat something like that.
    So what's your exchange son's favorite new food?

  4. Okay, trying again. I got an error message the first time.

    Great post, Angie. And so true. Our readers need to be able to experience the POV characters first hand.