Monday, May 30, 2011

Taking a Fresh Perspective

Every so often, I conduct a black and white workshop for my photo club.

We go over the basics of looking for shapes, patterns, textures, and high contrast. It's a lot of fun!

Converting from color to black and white can make a scene come to life...

It can also save a scene that wasn't quite right...

How does this relate to writing?

Sometimes a scene or even the whole manuscript isn't working. We need to approach it from a new perspective and see what works best:

* Changing POV?
* Changing main characters?
* Changing setting?
* Changing genre?
* Changing storyline?

Just like switching from color to black and white, we can change something major in our manuscript that presents a fresh perspective and puts a new spin on our work.

Any changes you need to make?


  1. AnonymousMay 30, 2011

    Good points and well illustrated, Diane!

  2. Excellent, Diane. I actually wrote about a change I made - it's personal, not related to writing. But we all need to stay aware to the possibilities of needed change. Thanks.

  3. Changing genre sounds scary. Cool photos.

  4. I love this idea - a fresh perspective is great and sometimes you don't need to stay there - just switch it up, see what happens and go back to your plot with vigour. Great!

  5. Good points. I like the idea of shifting your view to see the same thing differently.

  6. Sometimes adding another scene or two enhance the other storyline works for me.

  7. AnonymousMay 30, 2011

    I'm plugging holes now in my WIP and should have it ready as an ARC for review before going off for its final edit. But these filler chapters can offer opportunity for twists in the plot or further character development. I never discount filling in the gaps because the offer opportunities to do some wild stuff.

  8. I'm wondering if I need to change the timeline of my work in progress. It's what I'm going to work on next. First, I'm going to create a graph of the timeline.

  9. I tend to focus on the character's outer world--what's happening, what they are saying, etc. I'd like to spend more time on their inner thoughts and feelings.

  10. Changing the location can also help.

  11. Karen, nothing is constant in life.

    Going for broke, Stephen?

    Helen, is that change or procrastination?

    Tamara, I think I'm the opposite.

  12. In my last wip, I changed from third person to first person POV and I thought it really made the writing come alive.

  13. What a great post, L Diane! You've made it all seem so clear...

  14. Ooo, I do this all the time. The POV trick is what I consider the flat-head screwdriver in my toolbox.

    The flat-head is one of your most utilized and under-appreciated tools, you know. I use this all the time!

    Setting might be somewhere in my ratchet set, and MC/Genre/Storyline would be what I consider complete destruction and reconstruction, probably the sledge or a wedge-axe, maybe a hacksaw.

    In any case, these are key tools in your box. Use them wisely, and remember they are there when you need em.

    As for pictures, the best roll I've ever shot (35mm film, I still use it, still haven't gone digi) was from a B&W roll that I accidentally loaded thinking it was color. It was during a snowstorm here in Dallas when my son was about 4 years old and the Golden was still alive and young and red on her snout. The pics are gorgeous and my mouth went dry when I saw them.

    Your point is well-taken.

    - Eric

  15. I'm beginning to think what my novel needs is a whole new perspective - change in my own, tht is. perhaps I don't see it the same as everyone else does.

    Good points to consider.