Friday, February 13, 2009

Writing the Molecules--The Joy is in the Details

This morning I shall discourse about Writing the Molecules...those tiny aspects of our perceptions that flesh the bones of the written word. First, I shall explain why these nuances/gradations of physical awareness are so important to a Dragon. Ah, I mean a writing Dragon.

As a Dragon I have remarkable, extraordinary, notable senses. No eyesight is keener. I can detect a gnat fluttering/flickering/flitting 'mid blossoms and bumblebees a mile away. Indeed. Five thousand two hundred and eighty feet. Twice one thousand three hundred and twenty feet. Ha! Did I say keen? A telescope cannot match me for optical acuity. 'Nough said.

My auditory organs are without peer. I am an acoustical wizard. I not only see the gnat, I hear it release the end result of its digestive process. Intestinal gases. Fart. And a tiny toot it is, little more than a minuscule gut groan. A sigh. A whimper. Yet my ears absorb the passing molecular tremble as if it were the great rage of St. Helens coughing pyroclastic chunks like hairballs. I hear everything. Dew dripping resounds like continental rifting in my notable ears. 'Nough said.

And my nostrils--! Have ever a more admirable set of olfactory sensors deigned to exist? Not merely large, as befits a beast of my size and mass, but responsively receptive. Scent sympathetic. Sinus scrupulous. In less delicate terms--merely for the sake of clarification, you understand--I smell that tiny toot. 'Nough said.

Not to mention, sense of touch. Tactile perception. You thought I had no keen sense of touch because my body is armor plated, my toe-tips clawed? Short of stripping off my scales, I do have my accessible spots, dear friends.

This confession is not to be shared with Gryphons or their detestable ilk! Thankfully, Gryphons cannot read. They've the brain-capacity of a kumquat, but you must not tell the stinkers. They've good memories, for all that a walnut would fill what passes for a cranial cavity. that you have promised no loose lips, I will share this truth--there are four spots on my anatomy that are very sensitive to contact: my muzzle, that velvety area of prehensile upper lip and the soft spot between my nostrils; the tip of my tail; my forefoot pads (same as your palms), and my leg pits. You would call them arm pits, but even though I use my front legs with much the flexibility of the human arm, biologically speaking they must be referred to as 'legs'. Ergo--leg pits. Front and back. Because this is--more or less--a 'family friendly' site, I exclude discussion of my--ahem--reproductive region. The details of that section remain under the sole proprietorship of my mate, Riastor.

However, back to tactile perception--did that gnat sit upon my muzzle, I could feel its gas pass. Assess its tiny legs tracking over my skin. My upper lip, foot-pads, and tail tip can detect soft, rough, smooth, irregular--well, you name it, I can feel it, with no less keenness than your own human fingertips.

Why do I list my sensory capabilities, you may ask? To point out that as a Writing Dragon, I have the same aptitude (superior, actually) as a human does to absorb/suck up/take in my surroundings. Therefore, I am well able to decipher the world with my body parts and describe/discuss/expound on it with gleeful intensity. I love what I see, hear, smell, and touch. So should the characters of whatever tale/story/yarn I pen. (Oh, very well. Excuse me! What my scribe pens for my clumsy claws.) In any case, All writers, I believe, should love these aspects of their characters. After all, are their characters not intended to be alive. Breathing, existing in the magical but viable realm of the imagination? Doesn't a reader (you may correct me here if I am wrong...but a Dragon seldom is) want to read the reality? The reactive senses of the character moving through his/her/its story?

The details, my fellow writers--and readers who enjoy what we produce--I reiterate, are the fleshy draping upon the bones of the work. Would you have your character(s) perceived as mere skeletons stiffly sauntering about his/her/its world? Nay. Naynaynay! Mobilization requires muscles (I mention this my first book, The Dragons' Veil). Muscles would wither without flesh to encase and succor them. And flesh reflects the world--is it not the aspect of the body most in contact with the world?

You see the wisdom? Insight? Acumen? If you would enrich your words, my fellow writers, and in turn enrich your imaginary worlds, then utilize every facet of the real world in which you dwell. Sight, sound, smell, touch--the north, east, south, and west of the compass of by which you guide yourself through whatever tale you are inspired to pen/type/dictate.

Drat! Speak of the devil/imp/mischievous sprite! What is that gnat doing on my muzzle? Off, annoying speck of insectal indolence, and take your tiny tootings with you.

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