“No cry on the writer. No cry on the reader.” – said someone I forgot.
It’s been a couple day maybe weeks I’m struggling writing about (fictional) pain. Sadness. Grief. I have written few pages, but when I read it, I can’t really feel it.
If you’re a writer and have a fine life, entering this bubble where you have to create fictional life with a taste of pain is really hard. Well actually it’s the most problem on writing, where you have to cross the border between realities and fictional life in your head or on your computer. You can put your character in a certain situation, where he/she should be in grief. But you can’t easily describe about grieve when you don’t experience it your self.
So, I try to find help through music… There’s a lot of bittersweet song from Greys Anatomy soundtrack, Landon Pigg, Lucy Scwartz, Adele, to get you in mood.
Sadness is more than just some tears. To be honest I never really seen someone cry because they sad. And relate to this particular scene I’m writing, it’s about someone loosing her mother. I’m young… I don’t have many experiences on seeing someone sad for loosing their parent… (Okay I’m not that young. 🙂 but still). I haven’t had experienced many funerals in my life… Only my brother… I didn’t came to my father’s funeral. I didn’t came to my granny’s funeral either (Or maybe I’m too young to recall)
Off course I’ve had cried before… but really for cheesy-unimportant-things-you-might-not-understand like when I didn’t get into ‘flag raising team’ (It’s kind of big thing in my high school), and some other similar thing. I have never cried for life tragedy… I’ve only cried for self-acceptance or self-pride. #Note: Never Cry not equal Never Sad.
There are actions that I later found more effective on expressing grieve: Loosing ability to breathe normally. Faint. Doing things the character never did both in a productive or destructive ways: Cutting hair randomly. Hit cupboard. Curling body, as if feel the pain inside. Baking cupcakes (I honestly learn this from Greys Anatomy when Izzy’s fiancé passed away back on Season 2) Or Saying something they never said. There’s a lot to put on the list, depend on the character personality.
So I guess just follows all those advice about “Show! Don’t tell”. Describing action will be more ‘stab to the core’ to read than just explaining that your character is sad and in tears.
. For my foreign blog buddies: Flag Raising Team is really like it is sound: a team for raising flag. The highest goal for people in this team is to be chosen as a member of national team. Every year a group of high school students invited to National Palace and raising Indonesian Flag in front of our president on Independence Day.
There’s a lot of practices, exercises, sweats, and only tall people can get in. 🙂
It’s probably one of the coolest things in Indonesian Highschool, (at least when I’m still in high school) maybe like Cheerleader or Sport team in States (?).
. I cried a little when reading few farewell lines on Graveyard book -Neil Gaiman (Mistress Owen to Bod: “Face Your Life. Its pain its pleasure. Leave no path untaken”) and The Help-Kathryn Stocket (Aibileen to Mae Mobley: “You is kind. You is smart. You is important.”)
- Create a compelling opening to your novel (rebeccaberto.wordpress.com)
- Lessons from “The Help” (mommymanders.com)
- The Graveyard Book Review (farahhidayati.wordpress.com)