Blogs by Karen Harrington
Foggy day in Dallas
1/29/2009 7:55:14 AM
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How does fog impact you?
Why is it that days like today give permission to stay inside, savor a book, write a poem or do something creative? Fog has such a romantic quality, too. I think of Heathcliff walking among the fog in the moors of Wuthering Heights. Or Rhett Butler's departure into the fog as he tears away from Scarlett in the final scene of Gone With The Wind. Or even, the fog laden second paragraph of Dickens' Bleak House.
Fog everywhere. Fog up the river, where it flows among green aits and meadows; fog down the river, where it rolls defiled among the tiers of shipping and the waterside pollutions of a great (and dirty) city. Fog on the Essex marshes, fog on the Kentish heights. Fog creeping into the cabooses of collier-brigs; fog lying out on the yards, and hovering in the rigging of great ships; fog drooping on the gunwales of barges and small boats. Fog in the eyes and throats of ancient Greenwich pensioners, wheezing by the firesides of their wards; fog in the stem and bowl of the afternoon pipe of the wrathful skipper, down in his close cabin; fog cruelly pinching the toes and fingers of his shivering little ’prentice boy on deck. Chance people on the bridges peeping over the parapets into a nether sky of fog, with fog all round them, as if they were up in a balloon, and hanging in the misty clouds.
Whew! Dickens wrote the word 'fog' twelve times there.
Most writing books caution the modern writer against starting a story with scenes of weather. I tend to agree. But if you are starting the first draft of your story, weather can be a very good starting point. In fact, one of the tips about reigniting a stalled novel that was shared in the NaNoWriMo challenge (National Novel Writing Month) was to introduce dangerous weather to put your characters in jeopardy, get them to take some action and make new decisions.
Don't you think weather impacts your attitude? Do you have pull on heavy warm boots each morning? Shovel snow before you do anything else? Or did you just wake up with the windows open? Or what if it's raining, again, and shows no signs of stopping?
I think Napoleon was right when he said, "Geography is destiny." I believe that.
Tell me, is there a memorable story that comes to mind where the weather played a major role? What's your opinion of stories that begin with descriptions of the weather? Do you like them?
Come visit my blog - http://www.karenharringtonbooks.com
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