By Keith Fisher
I opened my eyes and beheld one of the most spectacular sunsets I’ve seen . . .
Because of working nights, I often miss out on needed sleep. I was trying to catch up on some of that sleep the other day when my eyes popped open. It was like my mind knew what my eyes didn’t, and it showed me a beautiful sunset just outside my bedroom window.
Streaked with red and orange, and set against the dark blue of the sky, the clouds were really only wisps, but the centers held a deep purple hue. It was beautiful, and I was impressed. I watched for a moment, but I needed the sleep so I closed my eyes again.
A few moments later, curiosity opened my eyes again. By now, the colors were fading, the sun had fallen farther away, beyond the mountains. I looked again after a few minutes, and found the sun had set—the world had returned to normal.
I closed my eyes and pondered the metaphor. As writers we spend hours learning our craft. We learn about hooks and sentences, self-promotion and marketing. We often overlook the beauty that lies just before our eyes. The drama, waiting to be described and preserved in our memories, and written on the page.
Much of life is spent collecting memories, little snippets of time we can draw from to give our characters depth. How many of us trudge through our busy lives in too much of a hurry to see what lies before our eyes, if only we would open them. Like my sunset, things happen, people do things, there is beauty. If my mind hadn’t shown me what my eyes refused to see, I would have missed the sunset. Good luck in your writing and observation—see you next week.
P.S. In the comments section of my blog last week Annette Lyon said:
I take it that the Dead Authors Society doesn't include only dead authors, then? I love Ray Bradbury. It'll be a sad day when he dies, and that day can't be too far off, because he's getting up there in age.
Yes, you are right, Annette. Thanks for noting that Ray Bradbury is alive and publishing. His new book, Now And Forever, looks very interesting. Maybe I should pull Bradbury from the list of the Dead Authors Society, I included Farenheit 451 because it was required reading in High school and I weaseled my way out of reading it.