clues at the scene

clues at the scene

Friday, September 6, 2013

Chainsaw Love

I love the sound of chainsaws in the night. They sound like ... mayhem.

Today's metaphor: cutting an onion with a chainsaw.

There are lots of way to do a job. Sometimes the way we want to do it isn't the best for the project at hand.

I had an affinity for 8-ball pool early in life and loved to sink the balls "with gusto" as I ran the table. Occasionally there would be the awkward scratch as something jumped across the room. Nevertheless, it felt good.

When I was older and playing for money, an old hand cautioned me to be as gentle as possible with the shot. Give the balls only enough energy to roll to precisely where you intend and no farther. It makes you a better player.

I was shooting with old physicists. I one lost a stretch of nine ball 111 balls in a row to to one of these old crooked fellows. It was called "being schooled" and an expected exercise in pain for the younger generation. Someone had, after all, beaten the old men this badly before they became old men.

I bring this up because there are ways to craft our story construction to beat the reader over the head with the point we desire. It's hard to resist when we're baby writers. However, it makes poor technique and isn't the mark of craft as is having our ideas slip into the reader's head like a mouse down a hole.

Beating the reader over the head: chainsaw to an onion. It'll cut the first slice but the rest of the onion is long gone. Shredded, in fact.

Chainsaw love: we want it. We don't need it.

Yesterday I talked about the end of the world from aliens. I have another theory: that we ARE the big dog. I have the theory that there is no other species in the universe as bloodthirsty as humans.

The reason the aliens haven't come down in Central Park and introduced themselves? They landed in West Texas initially. They were shot and eaten.

If you land on a planet and the natives have something that functions like a chainsaw .... lift off. Immediately.

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