Monday, May 21, 2007

Tone and Heart

The busiest part of my year is OVER! Yay! I’m like a month behind on emails, on blog-reading, on everything.

But today, I have plenty of time to go blog-hopping and wade through my emails! I’ve missed everyone. (Hey, Rhonda, what happened to your blog? I’ve been trying to stop by for a couple days!)

Anyway, have you ever noticed that when you spill your guts, when you dig the deepest you’ve got, when you rip out your heart and actually get depressed putting yourself in your character’s shoes, that the reader is merely, um, entertained?

I always worry I get too dark, too deep, and too emotional. But what comes through the page seems to be about 20 - 40% of my emotions. God forbid I ever stop digging deep, LOL.

Do you notice a proportion to emotional output from you, to emotional reception from readers? Have you ever really ripped out your heart, put it on your sleeve, and feel like you’ve run a marathon, only to find out that you’re entertaining?

8 bonus scribbles:

StarvingWriteNow 5/21/2007 04:10:00 PM  

I get that every day. I just about kill myself trying to "emote" and then realize I'm being looked at with a "Well, isn't that nice!" look. Then I go gnash my teeth in private.

avery 5/21/2007 08:50:00 PM  

The best one I had was when a trusted writing partner read a scene that killed me to write and said, "That was the funniest part of the whole story!" I kept going back to revise it, but I just couldn't see what was so amusing. But, I guess you just gotta shrug and move on.

Susan Helene Gottfried 5/21/2007 09:42:00 PM  

Yup. I wrote something very personal, admitted it, and got shredded for it.

Haven't done it since.

Therese 5/22/2007 10:54:00 AM  

I think that's a common problem, but also preventable if you can identify what it is that's filtering your desired result.

Interesting puzzle...

spyscribbler 5/23/2007 12:09:00 AM  

LOL, Starving. Isn't that the truth?

Oh, Avery! What do you say to that? I'm glad I don't do critique groups, LOL. I'd rather publish it then hide under the covers.

I'm sorry, Susan! That's not nice of whoever at all. They say not to write personal, but ... I think once you've put some writing in, the personal is the best stuff. Just gotta disguise it aLOT.

LOL, Bernita!

True, Therese. Or be aware of it. Personally, I just have to dig about three times as deep as I want the reader to feel, and it comes out just about right. LOL.

Kate S 5/25/2007 04:21:00 PM  

Oh, yes. (I tried to comment here the other day, but blogger just wouldn't let me on. Grrr)

I've thought I was digging deep, and was scolding for not showing enough emotion, and once tried my hand at a bit of horror and those that read it thought it was supposed to be humor.

Happens to me in real life too. Can't win for losing sometimes. :)

spyscribbler 5/25/2007 10:17:00 PM  

Oh, Kate! Totally understand. You know, I knew another author, who blogged about an emotionally trying experience. She really exposed her true self as she told the story.

Her blog readers are mostly her readers, and they all left comments on what a great story it was. No sympathy, or clucking of their tongues, or anything like that. Nope. They just admired the story, and commented on how "hot" it was. (It had involved sex.)

She is a natural storyteller, though, and she told her story very well and in an engaging manner. But I wonder if those reactions were why she hasn't blogged since, LOL. Sad, though.