Monday, March 01, 2010

The Writer's Tarot- A New Series

The Writer's Card




Out here, he could be anyone capable of anything.

If only the moon had not been piled beneath so many dark clouds that she couldn’t see her own feet. If only she hadn’t been diving blind. It was broad daylight when she jumped. Seconds later the world had gone pitch black and she was plummeting through a raging thunderstorm. Cold pelting rain and crooked explosions of light and falling, falling, falling through a howling aerial maelstrom.

A violent slap from a sudden blast of air and she jerked sideways and began to spin.

Falling, falling, and then the chute opened.

The harness yanked hard and caught her so much by surprise she almost passed out.

Down, down, down, rocking and swaying as she dropped with freezing cold air rushing over her like a fast moving river.

She prayed.

A flash of pain in her left ankle as she hit the ground and crumpled like a crash test dummy colliding with the steering wheel. 

Broken. It might be broken. Maybe a bone was sticking out of the side of her leg. Maybe just a fracture.

She was too afraid to look after she cut the chute loose and hobbled all of ten steps before the man came up behind her in the dark and pressed a gun to the back of her head.

“I need a doctor,” she gasped.

“Lady, I don’t even have a band-aid,” said a raspy voice.

She felt her foot slide through wet earth and her hands slipped down the wet tree bark.

“Help me,” she said just before her face hit the ground and sloppy mud pushed into her nose.

excerpted from "A Matter of Timing," by Ferrel D. Moore


Roll the dice.  Deal the cards.

Stimulus.  Response.

The language of the brain is images.

Meaningful images become stories.  Elegant, elusive Vesper has a lovely example of how to draw exquisite poetry from images on her blog Chick with a QuillNevine has such a grand gift for matching her bracing, emotionally charged prose to stunning imagery that I often wonder which comes first, the image or the words.  Catvibe and K. Lawsen Gilbert are so masterful with both art and poetry that they are really spell-weavers.  And there is a story in each of Lana's masterpieces that reminds us why it is that words most flow from imagery.

But let's spend some time together looking at an interesting way to "juice" our writing by using the Tarot and a few other esoteric tools.  It's easy to do.  It's fun.  And, best of all, it gets results.

A few housekeeping details before we begin.  First, I have worked with this idea for many years, and was preparing to write a book on the topic when I learned that someone else already had!  her name is Corrine Kenner, and it's a marvelous piece of work.  It's comprehensive, well thought out and filled with instructive and interesting examples.  Corrine is also a gifted writing instructor, who builds writing exercises, guidelines and commentary throughout.  So, although I would have liked to have written my work before bumping into hers, I'm so impressed with what she did that I was compelled to recommend it to you.

My approach to the Tarot and its application is different than Corrine's, yet we both employ the same principles of using the characters and concepts of the cards as a means to establish and develop characters, themes, storylines and other elements for our work.

Have any of you read "The Fool's Run," by the popular John Sanford?  Is main character, a thief named Kidd, uses the Tarot not as a fortune telling device, but as a method to get his mind engaged in evaluating situations for a gaming perspective.  It's an interesting read by itself, but its slant on using the Tarot to get the mind going is interesting.

But enough of all that.  Let me show you one way I use the Tarot.  Do you remember the three part mystery I started a few weeks back?  I wrote parts one and two and posted them, then held back on part three to handle day to day life, etc.  But now I'm ready for Part Three.  Here's how I'm going to write it- I'm drawing a card at random from the Tarot deck to represent the third and final part of the story, and I will make that cards symbolism the conclusion to the mystery. 

Come back this weekend and see how I finish the story using the card.  See if you can guess.  Here it is:

Two of Swords