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The Hidden Life of Stories
The Hidden Life of Stories
You may not see it, but you feel it
It is remarkable to me, based on the sample of humans that I’ve had in writing classes, both “kids” and adults, how many people 1) express great concern about climate change and its effects on the planet,  2) are completely uninterested in other humans’ visions of what the planet they want to save looks, feels and sounds like, and 3) are even less interested in writing or just noticing what it looks like to them.
Fascinatingly, one student told me that he didn’t like to describe what people look like because he thought it was like staring at someone which was rude.  Another remarked in a similar spirit that in describing people you have to assign value to their appearance in terms of conventional beauty standards
The first concern, about rudeness, makes more sense to me.  But it confuses social looking with artistic looking.  Artistic looking is about care and respect.  It is like saying: I see this human in my mind’s eye and this particular human is worth the most precise attention I can give them. Because they won’t be here forever and they are as amazing as any animal you might see in a documentary devoted to the heart-breaking beauty of endangered animals.
The Hidden Life of Stories