My Experience on Being a Visual Writer

Really good writing, from my perspective, runs a lot like a visual on the screen. You need to create that kind of detail and have credibility with the reader, so the reader knows that you were really there, that you really experienced it, that you know the details. That comes out of seeing.

-Ann Voskamp

I'm a visual person. I like to see things, to take things in with my hungry eyes and devour them. Paintings are mesmerizing to me because I see exactly what the artists wants me to see; the wrinkles in the fabric, the shadow in the background. All of it is there for a reason.

I'm the same as a writer. I value being able to visualize something perfectly before writing about it because the description and subtle features usually ends up spilling into my writing. I even listen to beautiful music that puts me in the right mood in order to develop the scene.

But sometimes I get stuck. 75% of my writing is all from my head. I've never actually been to any of the places in my novel because, well, they are all made up. There are many times where I am tempted to ask stupid questions on instead researching endlessly for an answer because of course, for example, I need to know the right dimensions of a cottage in the woods, or how to fight an Ogre with a double edged sword.

I hit a rock recently as I came to one of my favorite parts of my book: the castle.

I would love to travel to Europe and study the ancient castles that are scattered all over the breathtaking landscape, but alas, that won't happen soon. Instead I had to turn to something else: my brain.

So, I spent hours on the internet doing research, looking up pictures on google, and learning all about castles. Although I did learn some good stuff and found some pictures, I realized that I needed to take a step back and slap myself.

I'm creating an original castle in a completely different world. I can do whatever I want.

I don't need boundaries that tell me what a castle looks like and has. I'm the one with the pen, so I'm the one who decides. I'm the one who breaks the rules and creates.

So by using inspiration from some cool buildings that I took pictures of and a little bit of my imagination, I created a castle. And instead of keeping it all in my head, I created a visual as well.8f5f5e63-4cba-4197-afa7-860a858a0d78

By putting all these pictures on my wall, I was able to fully develop my castle without using references or following the rules. It's unique and different, but it's perfect. And I can perfectly tell my readers what it looks like because it's all right there.

I had fun creating this visual. Another visual that I did was draw my book characters. I colored them and everything which evidently helped me see them as real people instead of ideas floating around in my head. Perhaps I'll show you guys my character sketches in another post.

Along with maps, legos, storyboards, and notebooks, I have been able to create a more structured and 3-dimensional world through visuals. I encourage writers out there to take some of that information in your head and turn it into something tangible.

Are you a visual person?

-Charlotte Emelia

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Published by Charlotte Emelia


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