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Wednesday, December 7, 2016

HOW TO WRITE LIKE LEONARDO da VINCI_IWSG entry



No, not mirror writing ... unless you're left handed.

Why did Leonardo Da Vinci write in backward or mirror image style?

I never believed that Leonardo's writing had anything to do with secrets or mystery writing.

He was such a creative, innovative person, he wrote the way he did because it was easier and possibly less "messy".

Leonardo was left handed.

If you have ever watched a left handed person write you will see that in order to be able to read what they have written,

as they write it, they "curl" their hand around what they have written. This allows them to see what they are writing.

So I believe Leonardo simply devised the Backward Writing because it worked for him.


Truly a practical and ingenious way to write his thoughts quickly and without mess. 

And obviously, he had no problem reading what he had written.

That's it. No big secret and deep dark mystery.

Just a good example of how Leonardo was someone who could "think outside the box". 


As you must think outside the box if you are to write something original.


You see, even if the original novel you write does not sell, you have not sold out the most valuable thing you have ... yourself.

What made this illegitimate son of a peasant girl and a notary become one of the most famous artists, inventors and scientists who ever lived?

His energy was limitless when it came to asking questions and searching for answers, and

he was the master of observation which led to more questions and discoveries.

He had an insatiable desire to learn as much as he could about everything he observed, and he took meticulous notes.

He even described himself as a "disciple of experience" which meant he learned from experiencing, experimenting and observing everything he came in contact with.

So must you be a disciple of experience if you would write "true" fiction even if it is a tale of utter fantasy. 

If the reader believes your protagonist, then she/he will flow seamlessly into the adventure no matter how fantastic ... if the logic of the heart rings true.

THE DA VINCI METHOD OF WRITING AWESOMELY:

1.) Curiosità.

Curiosità is an "insatiably curious approach to life and unrelenting quest for continuous learning". Great minds have one characteristic in common: they continuously ask questions throughout their lives.

Leonardo's endless quest for truth and beauty clearly demonstrates this.

What makes great minds different is the quality of their questions. You can increase your ability to solve problems by increasing your ability to ask good questions.

Like da Vinci, you should cultivate an open mind that allows you to broaden your universe and increase your ability to explore it.

2.) STEPS TO BECOMING A DA VINCI

 KEEP A JOURNAL -


Bring a journal wherever you go and use it often. Write your ideas and thoughts there. Try to write several statements a day that start with "I wonder why/how..."

   KEEP FOCUSED -


Observe according to a theme. Choose a theme and observe things according to the theme for a day.

 For example, let's say you choose "communication". For the entire day, observe every type and instance of communication you come across. You can then record your observations in your journal.

  OPEN THE WINDOW OF YOUR MIND -
Stream of consciousness exercise. Pick a question and write the thoughts and associations that occur to you as they are. Don't edit them. The important thing is to keep writing. This is also referred to as freewriting.

3.) Dimostrazione.
Dimostrazione is "a commitment to test knowledge through experience, persistence, and a willingness to learn from mistakes".
Wisdom comes from experience and the principle of Dimostrazione helps you get the most out of your experience. Here are some ways to apply Dimostrazione:
   THREE POINTS FOR YOUR INNER COMPASS -
Next, take a distant view of your belief (for example, as if you live in a different culture) and review it.
Finally, find friends who can give you different perspectives.
   ANALYZE YOUR SIREN -



Analyze the advertisements that affect you.

Look at the advertisements in your favorite magazine and analyze the strategy and tactics they use. Find the advertisements that affect you most and find out why.

  FIND YOUR AUNTIE OR ANTI-MODEL -

List the names of some people whose mistakes you want to avoid.
Learn from them so that you won't encounter the same pitfalls.


4.) Sensazione.

Sensazione is "the continual refinement of the senses, especially sight, as the means to enliven experience".

According to da Vinci, we can best practice Dimostrazione through our senses, particularly sight.

That's why one of Leonardo's mottoes is saper vedere (knowing how to see) upon which he built his work in arts and science.
Here are some ways to apply Sensazione:





  • Write detailed description of an experience. For instance, describe your experience of watching a sunrise in your journal.







  • Learn how to describe a smell.







  • Learn to draw.  Even if it is badly.







  • Listen to different sounds around you.

  • Learn to listen to different intensity of sounds from the softest (e.g. your breathing) to the loudest (e.g. traffic).







  • Live in the moment. Practice mindfulness.

  • 5.) Cryptic.


    Cryptic is "a willingness to embrace ambiguity, paradox, and uncertainty".

    An essential characteristic of da Vinci's genius is his ability to handle a sense of mystery. Here are two ways to apply Cryptic:





  • Befriend ambiguity.

  • Not knowing something does not make it ambiguous! It is when you DO know something but its meaning is indeterminate.






  • Ask yourself questions that relate two opposites.

  • For example, ask yourself how your happiest and saddest moments are related.  You will be surprised at your findings.






  • Practice the Socratic method.

  • The goal with the Socratic method is to examine possibilities, and that is done by asking questions, not by giving answers.


    Socrates was known (and criticized) for asking questions to which he didn't have answers.


    The key to using the Socratic method is to be humble.

    Don't assume that you or anyone knows anything for sure. Question every premise.

    6.) SO YOU QUESTION ALL OF THE ABOVE -

    How will this improve your writing?

    Imagine your heroine can't remember when she hasn't been able to ...

    A.) Taste colors
    B.) Not laugh when exposed to lies.

    Harmless right?

    No, she begins to have indigestion and hysterical laughter in front of forgeries in the art museum.

    She begins to earn a living until ...

    the intelligence agencies the world over hunt her for her skill at detecting lies and

    the terrorist organizations the world over want her dead.

    Then, an old crone said she once traded the heroine those deadly gifts in return for her earliest memory.

    Does the heroine want to un-do the trade?

    Let the author of WALL-E
    tell you how to craft
    a GREAT STORY
     

    23 comments:

    1. I just wrote a fictional MG book based somewhat on one of Da Vinci's long lost journals. It's with four agents!!! :) Love anything about him.

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    2. And when you test that knowledge, be sure to discard what doesn't work. Because doing the same thing wrong over and over is a bad idea.

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    3. That's a really interesting theory about why Da Vinci wrote the way he did. My mom's a leftie. I'll have to ask her what she thinks about that.

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    4. Sometimes I think my middle name should be Stale. Thanks for giving me some Da Vinci ideas to shake up my head and maybe freshen things for me.

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    5. Cynical Sailor: I wish it were my theory but noted historians thought of it! :-)

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    6. Replies
      1. Da Vinci was smarter than most of us!! :-)

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    7. Lee:
      At least his paintings were beautiful to look at, right. Me? I'm too fatigued to be stale! Enjoy your holidays!

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    8. Tasting colors - love that wonderful idea! Thank you! Along with all of your usual awesome-material, I found a story idea - and since I'm stirring it up with a few other things, it will be new in the long run.
      Happy writing!
      BTW - I write with both hands, but chose left-handedness to spite a teacher, then wrote backwards for a while. I was that quiet rebel - all the other kids thought I was a nerd, but in my head, I was snarky.

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      Replies
      1. I am so happy you got a neat story idea out of this post. :-)

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    9. Creativity is looking outside the box. Thanks for this. :-)

      Anna from elements of emaginette

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      Replies
      1. "Thinking outside the box" may sound like a "Duh!" for creativity -- but haven't you seen so many over-used tropes in the latest Indie Novels. And if I see one more bare-chested cover, I may bay at the moon! :-)

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    10. Hi Roland
      You did a great job of outlining Da Vinci's genius. I take a lot of mental notes and have always been an observer.
      Nancy

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      Replies
      1. Hemingway was a fine observer of humanity -- from facial expressions to the way different people moved. Thanks for the kind words. :-)

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    11. I love this. Da Vinci is one of my heroes--what a fascinating man. I expected to see more references to him in Italy, but instead it was Michelangelo everywhere.

      I love how you pull inspiration and wisdom from these great historical figures and share it. I'm so relieved it wasn't a five-year plan post! :D

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      1. J.H.; there have been many fine 5 year plan posts, but I feared too many like-themed posts would prove boring to my friends, so I tried to do one with at least a bit of color and on a subject I find fascinating. No, ghost of Mark Twain, not myself! :-)

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    12. I've always been fascinated by Da Vinci. He was brilliant and creative. Great tips on how to explore creativity and push ourselves forward.

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      1. When very young, I watched a fascinating mini-series on the life of da Vinci, and I was hooked from then on. I am so happy you enjoyed this post.

        J.H.; I meant to say I envy you your trip to Italy! :-)

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    13. I never knew any of that about DaVinci. What a fascinating man who apparently still has so much to teach us!
      Anne from annehiga.com

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      Replies
      1. To see as da Vinci would be fascinating, wouldn't it? And being able to paint like him wouldn't be so shabby either, right?!

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    14. Hi Roland - da Vinci has always interested me - the word polymath fascinates me. So clever - I hadn't realised the left-handedness connection ... but you've some amazing comments here.

      One of my mother's favourite uncles was right-handed and couldn't seem to throw off an illness ... his doctor suggested he changed to using his left-hand, after finding out - he'd been 'forced' to use his right hand, he then recovered! Strange but true ...

      oh gosh I'd love to have a smidgeon of one of da Vinci's talents ... but I've got interested in synesthesia ... where colours, taste etc appear in different formats in some people's brains ... whereas most of us - live with the muddled brain that is accepted as normal ...

      Loved this - thank you ... cheers Hilary

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