Posts tagged ‘Pat Conroy’

you don’t understand the story

In a past issue of Writer’s Digest, I came across an interview with Pat Conroy. In it, he talks about going to Hollywood years ago to work on the screenplay for The Prince of Tides. The director fired him, saying that Pat didn’t understand the story.
I laughed out loud when I read what Pat said in his interview. That a director would have the audacity to tell the author of the book (especially such a well known one) that he didn’t understand it. If I were Pat, I would have threw some new ones his way, and taken the screenplay with me.
It was his story wasn’t it? How could he not¬†understand it? Understanding or not, we all look at movies, books, life, in different ways, through different eyes. I have different experiences than my neighbor, my closest friend, and even my parents.
How do we begin to understand others? It begins when we start to understand ourselves.
I am in the midst of writing a novel, and I am stuck. Somewhere between the beginning and the middle. The main character isn’t what I want her to be. I know how I would like to continue the plot, but I just couldn’t move forward. I finally realized that there is an experience that she was meant to have in the beginning that doesn’t exist, at least not yet. As I am formulating this new experience and trying to rework the novel in my head, I see that it can now move forward with a flow that was missing before. A reason, shall we say.
I could say that I wasn’t “understanding” the story. And it was my own. How strange is that?
This goes beyond the stories that are typed out and turned in as manuscripts. It flows into life. Understanding ourselves.

Image source: http://www.nationalgeographic.com

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July 4, 2011 at 2:41 pm Leave a comment


Tracy Dee Whitt - Author

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