About Creative Writing

The Right Perspective

“Writing has laws of perspective, of light and shade just as painting does, or music. If you are born knowing them, fine. If not, learn them. Then rearrange the rules to suit yourself.” ~ Truman Capote

* * *

I think I’ve been heeding this advice subconsciously for years. When a reviewer tells me, as an independent writer, to “take something out,” I always consider it. I’m actually pretty open to suggestions where my writing is concerned.

However, when one thinks of creative writing as an “art,” which it falls under when considering academic Masters of Fine Arts programs, it makes me wonder about artists like painters and sculptors and graphic artists. Do they take a line out, re-sculpt an object, or alter their craft because someone tells them it’s not working for him?

The thing about perspective is simple: everyone’s perspective is different. We come at words and art from different backgrounds and experiences. What is wonderful and fabulous to one person may not resonate the same way for another. This is true whether it’s a book, a film, art on a canvas, or other types of artistic work.

Being able to dissect these perspectives requires a serious backbone. You can’t get rattled as a writer if someone doesn’t like your work or deems it “unpublishable.” Ultimately, the work is yours, and you have to feel good about it. If you do, then you’ve achieved the right (write) perspective.

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