A writer can go a long long way writing what she knows. I write both what I know and what I want to know. At the risk of getting tangled up in words, what about things that I didn’t know I wanted to know? Those things that lie dormant in our reptile brain, unused?
For me, it was a photo app that nudged me. It could have been anything, really, but I’m a visual person. I see the calendar as months rolling like gentle hills, weeks as stops along the way, hours as clocks ticking. When I write a scene, I’m seeing it like a movie.
The photo app, Prisma, popped up in a friend’s Facebook stream as an altered photo. Curious, I loaded it on my Samsung Note and started playing. The app has cleverly named filters, fairly limited, but all dramatic in their effects. I played with a photo of my daughter at a music festival. Hmmm, the flowers in her hair and sparkle paint on her face jumped off the screen when I used overlay. It looked like the spirit of the event itself. Next, I snapped a photo of my dining area, gave it a treatment and before my eyes it became a Monet-esque room, simple with vibrant blues and yellows. I wanted to paint it…. Artist, not walls. I had set down my palette and brushes years ago, totally in favor on words on the page. But there it was, the room was calling to me.
A few days later, thanks to an app upgrade, I found another filter and tried it on the same view. The result? Shocking light bursting through the window as if something magical beckoned. An Alice Hoffman moment. Or maybe Spielberg? Aliens or altered reality.
Will my photo app play shift my writing this week? Maybe. I won’t know for sure, but I feel a tingle as my fingers connect with the keyboard, playing. I read through a scene. Did I miss some colors? What else was she, my lead character, thinking really?
Words are my comfort zone. But things I didn’t know I wanted to know popped because of a photo app. It was like a walk down a street in a new city, coloring outside the lines, art at MOMA, appy week.
The original …. has its own story to tell. Choices ….