Monday, August 1, 2011

Shark Week and other ways to learn

I don't know about you, but I get pretty excited by shark week. I've been watching a little with my brothers, notebook in hand to jot down any story or character ideas, and wondering, because I'm a nerd, how to make stuff like Shark Week even more writerly applicable.

The main thing is getting story and character ideas, right? Whether that's from a victims view, a scientists view, the sharks view, whatever. And then you flip back and forth to the Travel Channel and hear the story about the train trapped in the Cascade Mountains that got obliterated by an avalanche. A good page or two of my notebook filled just from tonight.

The other main thing is to not let TV or anything else take over the writing, of course. But learning and seeing new things is a good thing, in my opinion, and I think Discovery, Travel, History and other channels like that are one easy way of imbibing knowledge. I think its sometimes fun to flip it on while I make dinner or something like that.

Then if you hear or see something you think is interesting and want to learn more about, then you can do more reading and research. Cool, right? It's summer, and I just thought I'd bring up some fun and easy ideas for keeping our minds fed that we probably do more often in the summer anyway.

Any other ideas for self-teaching?

Sarah Allen