Saturday, January 23, 2010

Thought Missile.

To me, the basic technology is the word, I mean that's not technology, that is a fruit of technology. The clue with technology is the ‘logy' bit – technology means writing about a body of knowledge. The word is the mother technology, all technologies are based upon the word, the word is the primal technology. Dealing with language, dealing with being a writer, you're gonna be dealing with language. If it's comics, then that will involve a pictorial element, but a lot of the basic things are the same. If you want to learn how to write, be analytical, and that probably means when you're starting, be reductionist. It's too big a problem to grasp the whole thing at once, at least at the start of your career. Break it down. Start thinking about the different components of a story.

What things should a story have? It should have a plot, although this doesn't have to be the most important thing. The plot is the skeleton. Sometimes a beautiful and elegant plot is what a whole story's about, and that's great, but sometimes a plot need only be a string of events that takes you from point A to point B or D or whatever.

Now, there should also be what the story is about, which is not the same thing as the plot. What the story is about - what are you trying to say? What kind of shape or impression are you hoping to leave upon the reader? In a sense, the story, or poem or verse or whatever it is you're writing, you can kind of think of it as a kind of projectile. Imagine it is a kind of projectile which has been specially shaped to be aerodynamic, and that your target is the soft grey putty of the reader's brain. What kind of shape, what kind of indentation, what kind of lasting scar do you want to leave upon your reader? You design the missile accordingly.


- Alan Moore