Friday, May 15, 2009

Creation, Destruction, And Re-Creation.

~Sia McKye~

Ominous clouds boil up on the horizon and the winds begin to blow. In no time at all, the storm is all around you. Jagged forks of lightning flash against the charcoal skies, and thunder vibrates through your bones and shakes the house.
Storms can be an assault to the senses and even tricking them. You watch in morbid fascination as trees bow in the wind and buffet your house. Above the sound of the thunder you hear a loud crack and you watch in incomprehension as the massive top of a tree breaks off and blows by your window, like a mere tree branch. Your eyes can’t believe it or the shock of watching trees come down like matchsticks. Falling trees close by feel like an earthquake—especially when more than one falls in succession. The blankness of your mind quickly dissipates and you’re running for cover.

Watching the raw fury of nature is, by turns, exhilarating, and awe inspiring, and humbling. It’s also terrifying. It’s the essence of creation. Creation starts with elemental and raw materials and builds something. Sometimes that first involves destruction of the existing, forever changing the visible material and recreating it. Creation, annihilation, and re-creation.

That’s true whether you are doing something as simple as breaking eggs to make a cake. Melting sand to make glass, or dynamiting a granite wall to make a tunnel. When writing or taking a situation, personality trait, building a story, or using words to change the face of a political structure. Words have power. The right words can make things clear or obscure, build or destroy depending upon how you use them.

It’s not always easy to take the raw ideas of a world and make it viable. Creating people for those worlds from a mere thought is both exhilarating and scary. Have you used the raw materials properly so those characters live, breath, and react, in the landscape of your world? Or have created paper dolls; stiff, unresponsive, and cumbersomely move them around your world by telling it all. Is your world real enough, so that the reader feels like they opened a door and stepped into your world seeing the wonders and able to connect emotionally with the people you’ve created?

If you’ve done your job correctly, your readers react become connected to the characters. The reader has moments of fear, worry, and anger. Their hearts speed up trying to outsmart the villain, the heart melts when the hero gets the girl. They feel satisfied emotionally after reading and participating in your world or story.

There are times when you look at your created world and realize it’s not feasible or you look at the paper doll you’ve been moving around and see you need to revise, terminate, and recreate. Painful and frustrating—especially if you understand the world isn’t working as you saw it in your mind, or a character doesn’t fit or is reacting hokey.

Writing is a labor of love. The force of creation requires energy. As we wrestle with our world and characters, choosing the right words and scenes, we feel limp when we're finished. If we’ve done the job correctly we also feel ecstatic. Have you ever gone back and read something you’ve written and feel a sense of awe with how it all came together? That tingle that tells you you’ve done a great job? It’s exciting, it feels good and you’re flying high.

Then comes your critique partner or your editor. Trepidation and excitement reign. Putting the finished piece on display requires courage because in the stark flash of lightning, flaws become apparent. Critiquing is also a form of creation, destruction, and recreation. It breaks apart the raw materials and reshapes them. You watch in morbid fascination as chunks of your manuscript are ripped away.

If done correctly, something better is recreated. If done incorrectly, you feel buffeted by the harsh winds, torn, and broken. You’re looking for shelter from the storm.

What makes you run for cover? What makes you feel buffeted and torn? Critiques? Rejections? Revisions? Deadlines?

Conversely, what gives you the feeling of exhilaration and awe? Pull up chair and grab a cup of your choice and let's talk about it.


Sia McKye has spent over twenty years in marketing and promotion. She's written and published various articles on writing, marketing, and promotion. She's a Marketing Rep by profession and also writes fiction. Sia has completed a single title romance trilogy and is busy at work on a fun paranormal series.