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The Zen in Writing

When writers hit that perfect combination of words that sparks a "magical moment," I like to think those writers have reached the pinnacle or the "Zen" in writing--Zen being defined in Webster's as "seeking to attain an intuitive illumination of mind and spirit through meditation."

When your words vividly capture that scene of bloody action or moment of wild passion with just a few pen strokes, then you've reached the harmonious bridging of words with action and emotion; you've entered the "Zen-Zone." That's the one where the fingers fly across the keyboard and those magical words plonk themselves on the page, painting a perfect scene in brief sentences.  After all, why spoil a perfect scene by being too wordy or preachy.  Challenge yourself by keeping the sentences brief but packed with the imagery that paints the scene or moment with the barest of pen strokes.

Writers know what they want to say; it's how they say it. I like using descriptive words that explodes with the intended action. The length of the passage depends upon the intended effect. Boring passages makes the reader's eyes glaze over and the story loses a bit of its momentum. Boring passages tend to be skipped over.  After all that labour producing material absolutely essential to the story, just how essential was all that stuff if it's skipped over and not even missed!

I love reading books by Steve Berry or James Rollins because they know how to keep the action pulsing along while you're absorbing their fascinating research material. Jeffrey Deavers is a master of short-stories as well as novels. I think short stories are more difficult to write because the suspense, mystery and mayhem are compressed into much fewer pages. Yet, just as much excitement, murder and razzle-dazzle are found in a few short pages as in a full-length book. 

We too can write like the experts. All we need is confidence in ourselves; the ability to use descriptive words; an active imagination;  flying fingers on the keyboard and the most important thing of all--finding the elusive key to enter the Zen-Zone.






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Would that it were so...

Oh, the keys to that kingdom are not as easily attained as one might wish, eh? One must write and write and write, only to build the first step of the stairway that leads to truly enlightened masterwork.

Still, no journey is completed without its first step.  Write on!

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The Zen in Writing

Thanks for your comment, Ron--I always wondered if anyone ever reads my blog. . .Red Room certainly has a deluxe buffet of bloggers! :)