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April 25, 2006
posted by David Meigs at 4/25/2006 10:39:00 AM
Is a word-picture worth a thousand words? Maybe. I suppose that it depends on the story. Strike that, it’s more about HOW the story is told. A good storyteller can make sorting paperclips sound interesting.

I love watching a room full of teens sitting bug-eyed on the edge of their seats, drinking in every word that falls off my gilded tongue. Unfortunately, it only seems to happen when I’m telling them a story. The rest of the time I’m speaking, they’re doing what teens do. They flirt, make spit wads or stare off into space, thinking about who knows what.

Finney, Calvin and Wesley will probably roll over in their graves when I say this, but I spend as much time thinking over my stories before a youth group meeting as I do researching my scripture text. Pretty sad, eh? Not really. I paint word-pictures that support the Word of God.

Several months ago, I had an epiphany. I do the same thing when I write my books. Every scene plants a critical element into the reader’s mind, one after another, until a full canvas appears and a light blinks on in the reader’s mind. They get it. A new perspective is born.

I destroyed all but maybe fifty copies of my ill-fated experiment in self publishing. Besides a crappy print quality, the book was light years away from being ready for publication. Still, it is nice to have received informative feedback from so many readers, even if I do get razzed about the typos.

Last Sunday, a young woman cornered me after church. She had in her hand one of those books that escaped incineration. It took all I could do to keep from tearing it from her fingertips and bolting for the door. But before I could execute my snatch and grab, she told me that she loved my book. She had me. I wasn’t going anywhere.

One by one, she recanted her favorite scenes, growing more animated as she went. “That scene where Caleb got set up by the Spaniard and had to fight...” she laughed her butt off. “Then I got so scared when he became a prisoner of the Nephilim, and...” she went on “...and what a love story...”

Then she looked me in the eye, as if she thought I could read her mind and said something that three-quarters of all my readers have told me. “It changed the way I see things...”

Yeah, my head is still swollen from the experience, but what can I say. You couldn’t slap this smile off my face. Still, it’s nice to know that the message wasn’t lost in telling the story.

If you will excuse me now, I will return to my gloating.
 

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20 Comments:


At Tuesday, April 25, 2006, Blogger Rulan

Okay, I'm back, I just couldn't stay away. I missed my blogging friends. Also, I just had to come and see what you were up to. (A very short time out I must say.) LOL

LOOK DAVID, I have always told you your book is wonderful. And yeah, it changed the way I see things too.

Get the book finished and out there so it can reach hearts, change lives and bring joy.

When I read your book, it became my instant favorite book after the bible.

 

At Tuesday, April 25, 2006, Blogger The Curmudgeon's Rant

LOOK RULAN, - Thanks for the kind words... lol

 

At Tuesday, April 25, 2006, Blogger Rulan

Oh, and I would love to have seen you try to snatch that book off her and rush for the door. I bet that once she got over the shock, she would have tripped you up with her umbrella and shatched it back. lol What a picture you paint.

What is it with us writers when people say they love our writing? There's not much like it to make us go all gooey inside.

LOL See how much I missed blogging?

God bless and have a great and productive day.

 

At Tuesday, April 25, 2006, Blogger jel

I want to read that book! :)

I got smoke in my eyes, did you say Goat or gloat! :)

 

At Tuesday, April 25, 2006, Blogger The Curmudgeon's Rant

jel, - I want you to read that book!

And yes, we gloat as we smoke our goats...

Did I answer your question? lol

 

At Tuesday, April 25, 2006, Blogger Rulan

whoa, you've changed your blog. Hey, great to see the links etc. Which reminds me that there are some that I've forgotten to add like christianwriters, etc.
"Right on man."

 

At Tuesday, April 25, 2006, Blogger jel

smoked goat not half bad,
and like the new look, but it's missing something. :(

 

At Tuesday, April 25, 2006, Blogger The Curmudgeon's Rant

jel, - I hadn't noticed that you had returned from your walkabout.

I hope it's ok that I added you to my links.

 

At Tuesday, April 25, 2006, Blogger Bonnie Calhoun

You get to gloat....about the outstanding job you did on your sidebar...You go, Dave!

Hey, I want to read the book too!

 

At Tuesday, April 25, 2006, Blogger The Curmudgeon's Rant

Bonnie, - Thanks for all the help!

I'd be honored for you to read my book. After I’ve finished the changes suggested by my editor, I’ll send you a review copy.

 

At Tuesday, April 25, 2006, Blogger M. C. Pearson

I love your book...I have it in a box waiting to be unpacked so I can read the final chapters and send you any feedback. Sigh. Ain't movin' fun? Ar ar ar.

That kind of review would make me zoom into a rainbow. What a great thing she said about changing the way she sees things. Lovely. Just lovely!

 

At Tuesday, April 25, 2006, Blogger M. C. Pearson

Hey...my link doesn't work... I think you forgot the a in < / a > or something. Because I'm a swollen head writer too who needs all the publicity she can get! LOL

 

At Tuesday, April 25, 2006, Blogger The Curmudgeon's Rant

Mimi, - Sorry about that... But, it works good now.

I loved your book too. In fact, I'm about to dig in for another trip into the land of the fantastical...

 

At Thursday, April 27, 2006, Blogger K. Jimmy

hi old friend, been a while but i finally have the internet on in our new home. thanks for stopping by my blog and thanks for the kind blessing...we need it.
i havent caught up on reading all the latest on your blog but i will. God bless

 

At Thursday, April 27, 2006, Blogger K. Jimmy

p.s. id also like to read that book!

 

At Thursday, April 27, 2006, Blogger The Curmudgeon's Rant

k. jimmy, - I was worried about what happened to you. I'm so glad your back. I'll add a link to your blog.

 

At Friday, April 28, 2006, Blogger K. Jimmy

thanks for your concern! all's well. just going through a growing time i think. i mean, we didn't have the internet on for a couple of months, but i didnt bother to try and get on the net anywhere else either cos i was in a bit of a pit personally(i thought it was a pit- now i see it was just another bend in the road...it's all good)
Thanks again, and God bless

 

At Friday, April 28, 2006, Blogger The Curmudgeon's Rant

K. Jimmy, - We old YWAMer’s have got to look out for each other.

I am sorry to hear about the bend in the road. I’ve seen a bend or two myself in the last couple months. Hang in there my friend.

 

At Saturday, April 29, 2006, Blogger K. Jimmy

thanks again friend! yeah, its a different world outside the old "full time ministry" gig...i mean i think i like it better in many ways but you really gotta find ways to keep yourself accountable or i find my standards slipping real quick, even just in my thought life...its so much easier to be a christian when you live in a christian communnity of other like-minded fulltime workers...sigh...!