Bring Your Imagination to Life
I was struck by several comments in a number of film reviews/previews I read over the past week or two about well known novels or short stories that have made it onto the big screen. (Or little screen come to that.) The Hunger Games - Catching Fire / The Hobbit / Game of Thrones, to name a few.
Some of the reviewers were keen book readers, and made the comment that while they thoroughly enjoyed what they had seen, the celluloid versions had a long way to go to capture the mood and intensity of the books themselves. I've got to say, I thought they made a really good point.
I'm an avid reader too, and have read all of the books incorporation the above mentioned sagas. I remember watching The Hunger Games and felt exactly the same thing. Don't get me wrong, I loved the film. But I do remember thinking, what a shame they missed the oppressive weight of subjugation the book manages to convey, and how life in the districts is sheer drudgery. It adds weight to the travesty and injustice behind the spirit of the Games - ie - to keep a broken people down. It helps you understand the story (and what you subsequently see on the screen) at a deeper level, so you can relate to the characters much more personally.
Then it made me realize what a responsibility we have as a writers.
We pour our heart and soul into our projects don't we? But in our urgency to get our thoughts down onto paper, do we ensure not to rush too much? Do we safeguard the integrity of our story by taking the time to give it a structured history and a texture that makes it believable? To add a depth and weight to the plot that makes it worth others considering it?
Yes - do we breath real life into our imagination so it does more than blandly run along the cold line of a page. When others read our work, have we helped them envisage something like this could easily jump out and grab them?
Do we show - not tell?
We each have our own voice, our own style when it comes to writing. But those reviewers helped reinforce how essential it is for me to draw people into the worlds I create, so they become personally involved in the lives and events depicted within the pages. I want people to read my books and spit with rage, curse with frustration, cry out with satisfaction.
I won't be able to do that, unless I make every effort to bring my imagination to life...and make it real.
Do you keep it real?