Light and Shadow

Quirpon Island, Newfoundland, 2019

Viewpoint is everything, we know. It determines what part of a story gets told, what gets left out. It shows us where to look, where to linger, where to leap, where to make connections.

Viewpoint is practical. It can be chosen, adhered to, supported, shifted as needed.

But then there’s the question of light. Light is capricious, dependent on much that is outside me, the writer. Light is what I find out about my work in progress as I’m blundering through it, living it in my head when I should be feeling it in my heart. Light is the illumination I get when I’m not looking directly at the story but allowing my mind to swirl within it.

Light casts shadow, and that too is more than a choice. Once I see what needs to be included, the rest falls away, like the shadows in a picture that superimpose one image on another, or blend building and sky in fantastic cutouts I never intended.

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