This week we dove into theme. I think some of this will relate to any creative life. We created word clouds through Wordle.net. First we wrote a list of topics. These topics were used to create our cloud. The word cloud image has to be posted somewhere and stared at on a regular basis as you create your work. In other words, don't mess with theme while you are writing. Be aware of it but don't touch it. You will end up on the road of didactic and moralistic. Avoid at all cost.
We talked about how theme works. You take a topic and then you say what the author is trying to say about that topic. Here are two examples. In Star Wars, a topic is destiny. The road to destiny will show up when your pining for it, it won't be what you expected, it will rip you away from everything you have ever known, it will be harder than you ever dreamed, and it will be better than you ever expected. In Finding Nemo, a topic is fatherhood. A father will go to the ends of the earth to save a beloved son; nothing will stand in his way.
Finally I mentioned some of my theme tricks. I drop quotes around to inspire me as I work on a book. I put them in junk drawers, tape them to the bottom of lamps, and tuck them between the pages of my favorite books, and when I stumble on them, I think about them. I also pick out a list of inspirational songs and play them before or while I am working. I also chose inspirational images and then stare at them when I get stuck. These activities feed my theme. I don't know how and I don't want to know. The journey of writing a book is saying what you want to say and it something of a mystery, just like you.
I hope you enjoyed this little trip into theme. I hope you never think about and create it anyway. Dig into your soul and you will share what your theme. I will be back next week with revision.
Here is doodle for you:
A quote for your pocket. This is some inspiration for one of my books.
“The past is never dead. It's not even past.” William Faulkner.