Painting With Words Part 4 This section is wonderful for writers but the entire thing is awesome!
Painting With Words Part 1
Painting With Words Part 2
Writing With Words Part 3
A few thingst I've learned or been reminded of by David McCullough.
1.) Find your favorite work space. That may sound simple but it's not for some of us. I recently lost my workspace because we needed an extra bedroom at home so now my desk is in the dining room. Noise cancelling headphones and possibly a room screen will soon be part of my world headquarters.
2.) "You can only learn by doing it. You can't learn to write without writing."
3.) "History is about life, about change, about consequences, cause and effect . . . it's about music and poetry and drama and science and medicine and money and love . . " This man knows how to make history fun.
4.) "Marinate your head in the time and culture you write in."
6.) "The work is the reward."
7.) Develop a list of ideas that you want to write about eventually.
8.) Sing a song even if it is off key. :)
9.) "Count your blessings."
10.) "The pen and the voice died on the same day. Jefferson and Adams died on the same day, July 4, 1826, the 50th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence."
I think artists of all kinds will love his new book, The Greater Journey. You can see a video trailer here, Author Page, and listen to him talk about the book.
In one section of the video McCullough talks about being a fly on the wall in one favorite place in history. If you could choose only one place to be a fly on the wall in history what event would you choose?
Tuesday, July 12, 2011
Jeannie the Therapist:
Jeannie Campbell is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (MFC # 45366) in the state of California. She is Head of Clinical Services for a large non-profit in Humboldt County, and enjoys working mainly with children and parents.
Jeannie graduated summa cum laude from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary with a Masters of Divinity with Specialization in Psychology and Counseling and magna cum laude from the University of Mississippi with a double major in psychology and journalism. She has worked in a crisis pregnancy center, psychiatric hospital, drug rehabilitative program, several non-profits and homeless shelters, a foster family agency, and in private practice.
Jeannie the Writer:
Jeannie has been writing ever since she received a diary for her fifth birthday. She began writing angst-ridden middle-grade novels in junior high, often commandeering the family computer for hours on end. After eight years of higher educational pursuits, she moved onto adult contemporary romance and romantic suspense, frequently using her day job as a therapist to generate lots of fodder for her night job as a writer.
Two of Jeannie’s “therapeutic romance” manuscripts have garnered the high praise of being finalists in the Genesis Contest for unpublished writers, sponsored by the American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), of which she is an active member. She writes a popular monthly column for Christian Fiction Online Magazine and has been featured in many other e-zines, newspapers, and blogs.
Often say: "Get some couch time" and "on the couch"
What is Character Therapy?
Character Therapy is what I do when I use my professional training and experience as a licensed clinician to evaluate and diagnose fictional characters.
How can you—a published or aspiring writer—benefit?
1) Write characters more realistically.
Using a search engine to find out information about a mental disorder yields a very different result than asking a therapist who has treated those same problems in real life. Instead of getting a bunch of stale facts, I can help you breathe life into your characters while taking into consideration your unique story world.
2) Plot more feasibly.
Plotting the external conflict around your character’s internal conflict is essential to create tension on every page. Understanding the character’s driving goals and motivation in relation to their emotional state will help you figure out what plot points need to occur to maximize the character’s arc to its fullest potential.
3) Avoid clichéd or incorrect depictions of mental disorders.
My passion is helping those not afflicted with mental disorders understand those who are. Since one in four adults have a mental disorder, the likelihood of one of your characters having one is pretty high. But you want every nuance to ring true about the character, not feel cardboard cutout or stereotyped. So pick my brain instead of yours to avoid pitfalls of re-writing later.
Have I piqued your curiosity? Think your characters might benefit from some couch time?
Website for a couch appointment: http://charactertherapist.com/
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
I work in the mental health field and I'm fascinated and frequently appalled by the treatment of those who suffered from mental disorders throughout history. Whether or not you are familiar with what happened to King George III you might find this post interesting.
The Madness of King George
Nigel Hawthorne and Helen Mirren star in this incredible movie that released in 1994.
Some of my favorite lines from the movie. You can find more at the Internet Movie Data Base
[Pitt has given the King some papers to sign]
George III: What is this? America, I suppose.
Pitt: No, sir.
George III: Oh, America's not to be spoken of, is that it?
Pitt: For your peace of mind, sir. But it's not America.
George III: Peace of mind! I have no peace of mind. I've had no peace of mind since we lost America. Forests, old as the world itself... meadows... plains... strange delicate flowers... immense solitudes... and all nature new to art... all ours... Mine. Gone. A paradise... lost.
I found this next scene between the King and his doctor very sad and unfortunately accurate for the day.
Dr. Willis: If the King refuses food, He will be restrained. If He claims to have no appetite, He will be restrained. If He swears and indulges in MEANINGLESS DISCOURSE... He will be restrained. If He throws off his bed-clothes, tears away His bandages, scratches at His sores, and if He does not strive EVERY day and ALWAYS towards His OWN RECOVERY... then He must be restrained.
George III: I am the King of England.
Dr. Willis: NO, sir. You are the PATIENT.
How sad to think that King George may have actually been suffering the effects of arsenic poisoning. Read this: King George III: Mad or Misunderstood? and this: Porphyria or Arsenic?
Whether you are a reader or writer have you ever stumbled across something in history that just grabbed you by the throat and wouldn't let go? Your own magnificent obsession so to speak? That' me and the Regency era. What's your favorite time period in history? What country?