Monday, November 14, 2016

Acting and writing

Acting. I've had a little experience in the field. I was a professional child actor from the time I was old enough to learn lines until my teen years. At that point, we moved from the Big Apple to a much slower pace and a "normal" life.

In this day and age, there are so many actors and actresses haunting the audition halls. Some are destined for great fame, while others will be playing second fiddle off Broadway or traveling the country in stage shows.

I've felt that the caliber of acting has reached a low mark. You see, from my viewpoint, an actor's job is to bring to life the words from the script. In years past, most actors got their training performing before a live audience. They were able to gauge their performances by the reaction of the people sitting out front. In practicing how to deliver a line, the actor's use of facial and vocal expressions weighed in to perfect their craft. If a line was delivered like a wet noodle, many key points were missed. So you learn to change the expression, or wait the pregnant beat to deliver it with more flair or punch.

The point is, you always get a second chance with the next group that comes to the theater.

Unlike live performances, writing uses words to bring your characters to life. You cannot physically look at the person and gauge what they are thinking. You have to actually write words that will fill your imagination with scenes. Crafting the words to draw and keep your readers. Not an easy feat. As I have been studying writing, I also read a lot. Some authors seem to have a natural gift of expressing the thoughts of the characters they are writing about. Perhaps I could equate it to someone who has a gift of speaking. There's no "um" or pauses to collect thoughts. They just glide with a speech, enchanting their audience.

When I first started writing a novel, I thought it would be just as easy as what I am writing now. But I am learning there is more to the craft than just sitting at the keyboard and letting the letters fly on the page. A lot more!

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