POST CARDS FROM THE MUSE
A recent series of young adult books has reminded me how fun it is to believe in magic. Can you remember the first time you watched the movie The Wizard of Oz? How about Cinderella or Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory? Remember sitting in front of the television and not even being able to blink your eyes as magical things happened to make scarecrow talk and pumpkins turn into carriages and little orange people mix chocolate by waterfall? And how did you feel when the words “The End” scrolled up on the screen?
Writing is that way. You know the story because you’ve listened to the characters tell it in their own words. Your job is to take the story they told you and find the magic words that will weave a spell around your reader and keep them glued to your words.
Stephen King uses the term “telepathy,” and that’s a very good description. But J. K. Rowling goes a little further and alludes to “a book that casts a spell that won’t let the reader put it down.”
The magic comes from words spun like a spell, winding around the reader’s eyes and pulling their imagination to the page. They can’t put the book down until the story ends, and then they turn back to the beginning and start over.
Look for magic all around you and the words will appear.
Congratulations. You have received a post card from the muse.