Girls Write Out
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Ah, the memories! I probably shared with you last year the experience of taking part in a class reunion pajama party (just us girls) only two or three days after my shoulder surgery. And despite my pain and slowness, we still had fun. I hope this wasn't the picture I showed you, because I wanted this one to be different. We're planning our next annual weekend, which is always so much fun, but fills me with frustration.

You see, our class was unusually close, and when some of us get together all our wrinkles and lumps and age marks fall away and we're just the girls again. We catch up and share our lives. What amazes me is that each of us has lived several novels' worth of experiences, and every time we share, my mental block gets to me; each of my friends could be the main character in a novel of such depth and clarity and beauty...and I cannot write those novels myself. I lose something as I'm writing. I've been able to utilize the personalities and quirks of each of my friends in this picture--plus many others from our class--into composite characters, but something fails in the translation.

For instance, I used Doris's personality in a character in one of my books--I even used her name--but had the character doing things the real Doris would never do--such as ruining a perfectly good steak, or stealing old school files. I used Deb's name in a recent novel that really freaked her out. She was thinking of changing her name until she read to the end. I've wanted for years to write a book about us, how we really are and the agonies and triumphs of our lives, but I cannot capture it in a story. Nothing can come close to the depth of spirit and soul of my longtime friends and schoolmates.

But I'll keep trying. We always struggle to improve our craft. Someday, maybe, I'll be able to capture a better word picture of my friends. Until now, I'll just enjoy them.

Have you found this problem to be true in your artistic endeavors, whether it be writing or knitting, photography or painting? Have you been frustrated by the inability to capture the true picture that looms in your mind when you see something of beauty and worth?

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Hannah Alexander  
posted at 11:33 PM  
  Comments (3)
 
 
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3 Comments:
At 12:47 AM, Blogger Ruthie said...

Oh my, YES!! I am not a writer but I knit a lot. I just finished a baby blanket for my new granddaughter (due to be born any time now...YIPPEE!). I had in mind the perfect stitch pattern--achieved that pretty well. But the border would just not work out! Nothing I tried fit as well with the stitch pattern of the body as what I had in my head. It was so frustrating and I ripped it out so much that I was afraid I'd damaged the yarn. After much prayer...and the temptation to use a few rather colorful words...I came up with something that was tolerably acceptable even though it still didn't fit the picture in my mind. But this baby is practically on her way and I couldn't dawdle any longer; I took the easy way out and did whatever. Am I happy with it? Yes and no. Yes because I'm finally done; no because it isn't as pretty as I had envisioned. Oh well. Mom and baby won't know the difference.

 
At 8:23 PM, Blogger Hannah Alexander said...

LOL, Ruthie. So you can really identify with the agony and joy of rewrites, and letting the manuscript finally go to print. You'll SO love seeing your granddaughter wrapped in the love you created for her!

 
At 8:23 PM, Blogger Hannah Alexander said...

LOL, Ruthie. So you can really identify with the agony and joy of rewrites, and letting the manuscript finally go to print. You'll SO love seeing your granddaughter wrapped in the love you created for her!

 

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The Authors
Kristin Billerbeck
Kristin Billerbeck is a proud Californian, wife, mother of four, and connoisseur of the irrelevant. She writes Christian Chick Lit; where she finds need for most of the useless facts lulling about in her head.

www.KristinBillerbeck.com

Colleen Coble

Colleen Coble writes romantic suspense with a strong atmospheric element. A lovable animal of some kind--usually a dog--always populates her novels. She can be bribed with DeBrand mocha truffles.

www.ColleenCoble.com

Denise Hunter

Denise Hunter writes women's fiction and love stories with a strong emotional element. Her husband says he provides her with all her romantic material, but Denise insists a good imagination helps too.

www.DeniseHunterBooks.com

Diann Hunt

Diann Hunt writes romantic comedy and humorous women's fiction. She has been happily married forever, loves her family, chocolate, her friends, chocolate, her dog, and well, chocolate.

www.DiannHunt.com

Hannah Alexander

Cheryl Hodde writes romantic medical suspense under the pen name of Hannah Alexander, using all the input she can get from her husband, Mel, for the medical expertise. For fun she hikes and reads. Out of guilt, she rescues discarded cats. She and Mel are presently taking orders from four pampered strays.

www.HannahAlexander.com

 
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