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Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Workshop Wednesday - Lessons From The Page

This weekend, I treated myself to a little downtime and began reading this book; it's over a thousand pages, so I'll be a while at it, but I just can't stop working through Anne Rice's entire body of work. I'm ensnared. Today's Workshop Wednesday is less of a workshop and more of an observation, one of those pearls of wisdom plucked from the pages of a truly great author.

Rice's Gothic, supernatural tales may not be your thing, but no one could deny the true magic of her attention to detail. The rich histories, the depth, the shining personalities of her settings. Whether her characters are on the coasts of Cali, or in the swamps of Louisiana, or along the Seine in Paris, she pens a love letter to the city, and makes us, the readers, fall in love with this place. She writes especially lovingly of the South, which strikes a chord in me; I was raised Southern, and not ashamed of that. So many Southern writers spend their efforts razing the humid climes of their childhoods to the ground, humiliating, berating, belittling. But I love that, as twisted as some of the happenings of Rice's books, there is nothing less than sheer joy in her settings. Some of Lestat's exuberance for the world bleeding right through the page, making me feel familiar with Paris, with San Fran, with New York.

She makes me want to be there, inside the world of her stories, and that's a lesson I carry forward. Show your audience that they can fall in love with a place, and likely they will.

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