Monday, September 10, 2012

Cinderella Gets Ready for the Ball

Our heroine hears about the ball and wants to go. It's her dream. It's what she hopes for, now. She's willing to work for it, and starts her preparations.

You and I likewise have dreams. We are artists, writers, creators. Our dreams may seem far-fetched right now, but we're willing to work for them. 

So we’ve got our scrap of paper...

link to original here

And we’ve got our idea, or even just a hint of an idea...

link to original here

Put the two together. A story is written one word, one sentence, one image at a time. 

Do this now.

Right now. Not later. Just a couple of words, and then you can add or subtract from them later. Here, I'll join in:

That's what the stack of papers or post-it's are for, so you can put them around your house, in your car, in your purse or jacket. So you've always got something to write on when another word, another scene, pops into your head.

Put one of the pens or pencils with your paper so you don't have to go looking for something to write with in the moment. Do this now. If you're procrastinating this step til after you finish reading, you're missing my point entirely.

Maybe you'll see something unexpected throughout the day that sparks a thought that'll add depth to your story. Maybe you'll feel something and know that's exactly how one of your characters would feel too.

Get in the practice of writing down snippets. It doesn't matter if they're perfect. It doesn't even matter if they're complete sentences. Just write it down.

Have you done that? You've written down your image? Okay. Let's move on.

Despite all her preparations, Cinderella doesn't go to the ball. Her step-sisters find out what she's doing, and thwart her plans. She gives up, figuring it's too hard, not worth pushing past the difficulties both mental and physical. 

Her step-family goes, they have a marvelous time, but when they come home life goes on as it did before. They retell their stories from the evening for many years, and Cinderella can imagine how amazing it must have been, but she doesn't really go out of the house anymore. She doesn't have time or motivation. She's cleaning out chamber pots and fixing food for her finicky relations until they are all old. The house, all her father's wealth and wishes of happiness for his daughter, get passed on to some other male relative on the step-mother's side. Cinderella dies alone.

Something(s) happens to keep you from working at what you want to do. You figure it's too hard to push for your dreams. For whatever reason you stop practicing, stop thinking about it, stop hoping. 

You recognize other people are doing what you wanted to do, are living the life-style you wanted to live, but you just listen to their stories. You don't really try to live outside of the mentality and reality you've created around yourself anymore. You don't have the time or motivation. Day by day, you give up.