Tuesday, October 31, 2023

The Crying Game

 October 31, 2023

   One of the curses of being raised by a Norwegian father is that I can safely say, I am not a big fan of showing my feelings. Much less, enjoying "a good cry." So, imagine my surprise when I encountered a "how to write good stories" book that stresses the fact that good storytellers always make us "feel something," sometimes even to the point of, you know, CRYING!

   "Oh, for crying out loud," as my Norwegian grandmother, Minnie Hauan Bell, would say if she heard me say this.

Minnie Hauan Bell on her wedding day

   So I am reading a book by Kate DiCamillo, called "Because of Winn-Dixie" and one of the paragraphs made me feel something that verged on tears. How can simple words do that? Perhaps the key word is simple. Simplicity seems to be part of the trick. Part of the game.

   How does this work? An unfeeling, wannabe storyteller wants to know.

"And I can go anywhere I want

Anywhere I want, just not home

And you can aim for my heart, go for blood

But you wold still miss me in your bones

And I still talk to you when I am screaming at the sky

And when you can't sleep at night you hear my

 stolen lullabies"

—Taylor Swift, "My Tears Ricochet," allegedly about losing the control of her songs to a bastard buyer, but also the lyrics are full of strong emotion, regardless of who it is about

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