Last week I had an opportunity to Schmooze in Hollywood! I've been to schmoozes before, but this was my first time schmoozing in Hollywood. Okay, it wasn't all glitz and glamour, like one would imagine a Hollywood Schmooze would be, it was better. It was all writing and work, which is exactly what this author needs. The topic was: Emotional Writing: Connect to Convey. Since connecting your readers to your characters is crucial, I couldn't wait to dig in.
We started the night with a writing exercise, then went on to draw an emotional event from our childhood, showing only the inanimate objects. Never having done an emotional illustration before, I was amazed at the insight it brought me into seeing the life and emotion of a scene. Things appeared in my illustration that I might not have shown with my words. I will definitely be using this skill the next time I'm stuck on what to show in a scene.
Another tool from the night was a book I went right home and ordered: The Emotion Thesaurus. I'm not sure about you, but there are times when I can't figure out exactly how to show an emotion. Ask yourself, how many times does your characters, sigh, shrug or shake their heads? There was an editor in the group who said the protagonist in the story she was reviewing grimaced 150 times! Which made me wonder if I had any actions that occurred 150 times.
Overall it was a wonderful night and I will be going back next month to review Writing Devices. How about you? Do you schmooze with your fellow artists? Did you even know writers liked to schmooze? If you're looking for a list of schmoozes, check out the SCBWI website. It is full of ideas to connect you to the world of writing and illustrators. Who knows? I might even see you next month in Hollywood.