The previous parts of the Depiction Series are:
Trolling through my twitter feed, I came across this:
Scott Myers @GoIntoTheStory
Character Types: Use archetypes to inform and inspire your character
development http://ow.ly/Gr6FQ #screenwriting #scriptchat
FULL LINK http://gointothestory.blcklst.com/2014/08/free-screenwriting-resource-character-types.html
I've discussed "archetype" usage at length in a wide variety of posts, always assuming writing students have absorbed things like The Hero's Journey and other such studies, perhaps from astrology.
And yes, the widest selling writers use this character-building technique whether they know it or not (mostly not).
As I've mentioned before, fiction writing is largely a subconscious process which everyone does, but only a few acquire the skills to formulate a string of words that evoke their inner stories for other people.
To communicate what you "see" in your inner vision to others, you use the points of similarity and congruence with their inner vision, then lightly lace it with items unique to you.
Last week we discussed the value of unique vision -- the commercial fiction writer's personal stance against giving others what they want, and instead giving them something new, unique, different that changes the other person's view of reality.
That, in essence, is the definition of "Art." It doesn't matter what medium is used for this Art. It does matter that the Art portray a recognizable world -- with a twist. An Artist is in the business of showing their patrons and clients (your editors, publishers and ultimately your readers) what the reader's world would look like from a different point of view.
The attraction of artistic views is simply the Artist reveals a dimension of reality that the consumer didn't see before.
The ability to do that -- to see and express what others do not -- is gained in childhood by refusing the instructions in that wikihow.com post on The Writing Prompt:
The defiance of "Authority" is the essence of Science Fiction because "Science" means an organized body of knowledge or the process of organizing knowledge. People do the organizing, and willful blindness is an element of human nature.
Willful blindness is necessary to keep humans alive in this world. Our brains can't process all the data we can gather, and to stay alive one must react swiftly (more swiftly than predators can attack). So we use shortcuts to thinking.
Martial Arts leverages this shortcut tendency by training you to react before your brain had "thought" (i.e. distilled knowledge out of sensory input).
The defiance of Authority is also the hallmark of all Great Romances.
Romeo and Juliet, Helen of Troy, all the archetypes for The Romance, illustrate how when Neptune Transits set in on a matched pair, all normal, practical considerations that Authority and "Science" impose just dissipate.
In the grip of Romance, people do stupid, idiotic, insane things, apply a value system that puts The Other and The Relationship above life itself, above the high regard of kin and even The Law. In the grip of Romance, people are "insane."
Our Science Fiction Romance, Paranormal Romance, and Supernatural Romance genres illustrate how it can be that the insane expectation of an HEA (Happily Ever After) ending to the story is perfectly reasonable (if not logical.)
Why does about half of the world believe the HEA is nonsense? Even in the face of factual evidence to the contrary? Is that "scientific thinking" or "superstition?"
Why can't writers -- who can see the reality of Love, of the HEA, of Life -- convince this rejecting half of the world? Maybe it's more like 3/4 of the world that disbelieves in the HEA, but that segment of the readership is able to suspend disbelief long enough to enjoy a whopping good Romance combined with any other genre.
Could it be that the Willful Blindness described last week (imposed by training or chosen freely) --
-- can't be articulated and addressed because of the training in "writing" via Writing Prompts and a formula for how to "answer" a "Writing Prompt?"
Do writing prompts themselves limit us, or is it the just the imposition of the taste, the likes and dislikes, the rights and wrongs, by the academics who refuse good grades to people who say crazy things?
We acquire these Willful Blindness spots in our psyche from our Native Language, from parental training, from schooling, and from the school of hard knocks. The animal spirit seeks to avoid pain while the soul seeks Love.
Maybe that's simplistic, so take it as a writing prompt and answer with something creative, not what I would expect.
So stripping back to the animal simplicity of what a human being is, think about the evolution of binocular vision. Depth perception is often cited as a survival characteristic for humans (or Great Apes, or just all primates).
Why don't we have three eyes, so if one gets damaged the others still provide enough information?
Mystics hold that we do in fact have a "third eye." It is the eye that provides not the depth-of-field of the 3-Dimensional reality around us, but the addition of another dimension to the objects viewed by our two eyes. That third eye perception is often depicted as energy fields, color, ghosts, glimpses of the past and future (a time dimension).
Some mystics hold that the human being has this dimensional perception added to the usual binocular vision in order to be able to perceive God active in the world.
The forces, colors of an aura, shifting veils of unreality, are actually an astral plane dimension. As when you look at a cube corner-on, you can see two "faces" and the top, and with something to compare it with, you can estimate the size of the cube, whether the unseen back of it is near something that is behind it. You see in 3-dimensions.
Actually, your eyes don't see in 3-dimensions. Your brain interprets the incoming data and arranges it so that you can calculate which way to dodge to avoid being hit by that hurtling cube.
Your survival depends on accurate estimations of physical distances, speed, and relative position.
People who have an open, or squinted partially open, third eye are often thought to be "crazy." Psychics, Artists and Lovers share that reputation among those who accept the Writing Prompt training.
For those who have read my series on Astrology, the significant planet to study for psychic and romantic behavior is Neptune.
Here are index posts to Astrology and Tarot
Because they are viewing the world through a squinted third eye, and perhaps have been trained by that Writng Prompt training to put walls around their data processing to filter out information from that squinted eye, they don't see clearly and thus do not seem to be getting correct answers.
Very often, in real life, people fall in love, get married, then get divorced amidst much vitriol. So that proves there's no such thing as the HEA.
Or does it?
Does it just prove that binocular vision is inadequat to the task of assessing a fellow Soul and that Soul's relationship to yourself?
Does it take Trinocular Vision to guide one through social interactions into an HEA? (Or perhaps just blind luck?)
For example, suppose trinocular vision -- incoming data from 4 or 5 or maybe 6 dimensions (3 spacial; 3 spiritual?) -- could be processed accurately? What kind of person would that be?
How could you tell a crazy person from a sane one with a squinted or astigmatic third eye?
If a person had 20-20-20 Vision, what would he/she be?
Would you believe any of the "truths" such a person would impart?
Look back on history, read a lot of biographies and autobiographies, study the Golden Bough, and pay great attention to the history of philosophy and the history of fiction (from campfire Shaman, through nomadic Bard, to modern Journalism).
What sort of craziness that has propagated down through history stands out in high relief? What people are remembered for sort-of making sense even today, and are believed in even by those who do not model their lives around what those writers revealed?
The still-towering figures I see are:
1. Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses
2. Ozymandias, Hammurabi
3. Helen of Troy (long thought imaginary; Troy's remains were found!)
4. Kings and Prophets of the Old Testament ( David and Bathsheba
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0043455/ Tradition says the Messiah will be of the line of David via Bathsheba!)
5. Jesus, Mohammed (and similar around the world, Confucius to Gandhi - certifiable nut jobs all? Or those of trinocular vision?)
6. Various Popes, and Martin Luther, John Calvin, Huldrych Zwingli and religious leaders like The Rebbe
All of whom transformed whole religions and/or social orders or technology.
Months ago on a news story regarding an interfaith Event I heard a mainstream reporter casually refer to Chabad as "the largest Jewish denomination." I'd have given that appellation to the Reform Movement if you include all its subdivisions. I have no clue where that reporter got that information or impression, but it was not challenged anywhere I saw.
Are all these giant figures of history whose works are still known today just good grifters, just scam artists selling us religion to extract money from us or gain political power? Or are they our few humans gifted with Trinocular Vision, artists depicting reality in 6 dimensions instead of 3?
Abraham, Isaac, Jacob weren't writers. Moses was. Ozymandias probably had his publicist write that inscription, Hammurabi (quoted in a ST:Tos episode) may have written those words but scribes cleaned up the text, Helen of Troy being a woman probably wasn't allowed to publish, etc. But the stories told about these people, and some of their written works, are still considered authoritative today, and definitely influential.
Ozymandias expressed a materialistic philosophy - the works of his hands would establish his supremacy in your mind. Hammurabi is perhaps the best example of an early Humanist - giving a code of law that has a chance of working despite human nature.
All of these people are "visionaries" -- but each one saw something different from what the others saw about "reality," and chose to do different things because of of what they "saw."
Did some of them "see" trinocularly the Hand of God organizing human affairs? Did some of them see Souls seeking Mates?
Why do the things these people expressed still resonate (get repeated, echoed, distorted) in our internet based society?
If, in The Blind Men And The Elephant, all the blind men decide the one-eyed man is correct and it's an elephant, do the blind men "believe" it's an elephant or "scientifically determine" it's an elephant?
What cognitive mode depicts what we know of our Soul, and our prospects for finding a Soul Mate?
What does "Love At First Sight" mean -- sight with the eyes, or sight with the Third Eye, or Sight with all Three?
Is that well documented phenomenon of Love At First Sight actually the one point in your life when your Third Eye opens and you See trinocularly instead of binocularly.
Do Third Eyes only open (or only focus properly) during a Neptune Transit (when "reality" gets blurry?)
Is that trinocular glimpse of your Soul Mate the reason why you, and Romance Writers, can't articulate "What You See In Him?" and "What He Sees In You?"
Is astigmatism of the Third Eye the reason we marry the wrong person?
Does trinocular vision reveal the 6 dimensional universe so we can "see" the Finger of God creating and sustaining, shaping and reshaping the Universe?
Is that Vision of God (both distorted and accurate) what makes the Legends of that list of Ancient Figures "resonate" in modern culture?
I love the John Denver song, The Potter's Wheel.
Get a little hint how God must feel when Soul Mates finally join, then depict that joining and make your prose into poetry, prophecy and song.