Monday, May 26, 2014

Story Focus

Writing a story is like aiming a camera and focusing: do you want the wide landscape, the faraway shot, or the closeup? I often begin up real close, in the narrator's mind or with a close look at one or two characters in the midst of something . . . and then . . .

 . . . pull back . . .. . . to show where this takes place and who else is central to the story.

The focus usually moves in and out then, throughout the story: sometimes close in, sometimes further back.

Someone recently asked me how I choose which sort of focus to use, and the answer is that I simply follow how the scene is playing out (like a movie) in my head.  I don't feel as if I'm manipulating the 'camera'; I feel as if I'm following it, instinctively leaning in and pulling back.

Occasionally when I feel bogged down in the story, it is often because the focus is stuck--too close or too removed for too long--and a simple change of lens revives the movement.

Or something like that . . .

Thursday, May 15, 2014


Here in Maine
we're learning a lot about 4-H
and farm animals.

Jupiter (above)

4-H-ers take on the feeding, grooming and training of the animals.
They also muck out the stalls and learn about showmanship, breeding, diet and health care.

So much to love here.

So very much.


For more about 4-H, click here.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Mom and Dad

My parents
before they became parents

Look how calm
they seem here