Peeling Back the Layers

27 Jun

deer - look closely

I took this photo while camping earlier this month. It’s a picture of a deer. No, really! Look closely. She’s in there. The problem is – of course – that there’s too much other stuff getting in the way. As a result, this photo will never win a wildlife photography contest.

A new story is a lot like this photo. The starting idea doesn’t have much shape or form. The edges are all blurry and things are haphazardly placed. The only way to find the focal point is to peel back the layers of clutter.

While the fallen tree in the foreground of this photo is very interesting, it’s completely overshadowing the deer. The same with the screen of green pine needles. They have almost buried the poor deer.

The writer’s job is to clear away anything that interferes with the heart of the story while putting the supporting elements in all the right places. Backstory, subplots, and intrigue all have their place. But it’s not to overshadow the main story.

Deer by the apple trees 5-25-16

The deer here are the focal point while using all the other elements to add interest and support the subject. This is what you want your story to look like!

~ Pegg Thomas

Trooper and Pegg cropped





Posted by on June 27, 2016 in Pegg Thomas, Writing


Tags: , , , ,

5 responses to “Peeling Back the Layers

  1. kararhunt

    June 27, 2016 at 6:57 am

    Overshadowing in a story is never good, and this was a great way to point that out. Thanks for sharing, Pegg.


  2. Robin Patchen

    June 27, 2016 at 9:13 am

    What a great illustration.


  3. Pegg Thomas

    June 27, 2016 at 6:37 pm

    It was fun, too. 🙂


  4. jerichakingston

    June 27, 2016 at 9:43 pm

    Great visual! I have a tough time with this. When I write I have to hack through all the forest to get to the main focus, and even then, I’m dependent on my fabulous crit partners to help me chop more!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Candice Sue Patterson

    June 28, 2016 at 11:54 am

    What a great illustration, Pegg! How true!



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: