Sunday, November 17, 2013

Do You See What I See?

What do you see?
What do you see in this picture?  Some sticks? Some leaves?

I spent the afternoon and evening babysitting my 3 nieces, ages 3, 7 & 9, and I was reminded again about the fabulous imagination of the young.

At what point do most of us lose the ability to look at the ordinary and see so much more?  When does it become important for everything we do and say to be believable?

My nieces can create a story with anything.  Barbie and Ken have wild adventures climbing Mount Bed Frame and the squeeze toy animals cavort  merrily at a party in the bathtub.

As a wannabe writer, I struggle to get even the words of a realistic story onto the page, but my nieces create stories out of sticks and leaves.  Maybe if I start looking at things a little more unrealistically it will free my imagination as well.

And that pile of sticks and leaves above...well it's a fairy house of course!  The purple leaves are the pillows on the beds, which are made of bark (that's hard to see in the picture).  The green leaf on top is the flag to show the fairies where it is, the rock is the door, and the green leaf in front is the doormat for them to wipe their feet before they enter.  All designs courtesy of a 3 year old, with a little help balancing sticks from Aunt Susan.


  1. Sounds like we're both nonfiction readers with a story to tell in ficitional detail. If it makes you feel any better, the concept of the fiction I'm working on now came to me during NaNoWriMo '11 and when I gave all 14 pages to an editor it became clear that, while I think in detail, I don't write in detail. My ability to tell a story has improved over time and it's for the exact reason you stated...I allow my imagination to roam free.

    First, you are a writer. Maybe not the published author of a book but you are definitely a writer. I'd even venture to say you're the author of Netty Chasing Dragonflies. Secondly, you'll get better at telling stories when you record exactly what you see exactly how you see it.

    If you want a sparring partner, let me know. :)

    1. Thanks for the comment Sabrina. Like you, I struggle with writing in detail, even though I see it all in my head like a movie. I've learned the best way is just to get the basic story out of my head and then I can go back and view the movie in slow motion to get the details.