Friday, June 19, 2009
Using Life Experiences...
One of the most common suggestions for writing is to write what you know. That's why many authors use everyday things in their stories. It's why we writers are observers. We need all the experiences we can absorb.
There are somethings though, that come across as unreal, no matter how real they are. In the book I've written about my vacation to Hawaii, my critique group has commented more than once about something I've written in there, and my statement has been, "But that's how it happened!" grin.
Take this story related to me by a co-worker: She had been to a local Wal Mart, and realized that this couple was following her. It kind of spooked her, and she tried to turn corners quickly and get her errand done so that she could loose these people and get out of the store. She finally got to the check out and figured she'd lost them, when she turned around -- and there they were! As she started checking out, the woman got her attention.
"Um, can we tell you something?" she asked.
My friend said "I guess so."
The woman pointed at her feet and said "You have the sexiest feet we've ever seen!" Her husband nodded his head, both of them wearing serious expressions.
"Sexy feet?" my friend repeated, totally surprised by their statement.
The cashier heard what they were saying and was suddenly excited.
"Can I come see?" She came around the counter and looked at my friend's feet. "Oh yeah, they are sexy!"
Here they were, in a line at the checkout stand, and everyone was admiring my friend's 'Sexy feet'. There were several people in line behind her, but no one else seemed to think it was odd.
She was so embarrassed she just wanted out of there.
You see, my friend is a shoe fiend. She thinks shoes are the greatest thing next to chocolate, but she would never look at someone's feet for their feet, she looks at the shoes. The idea that these people were looking at her feet and thinking they were sexy creeped her out.
I told my husband about it, and now it's a family joke, as to whether we have sexy feet or not.
See how stories start? If I stick that experience in a story, do you think anyone is going to think it really happened? I definitely wouldn't have...before now.