Writing discoveries sometimes come from strange sources. Late last week I wandered around our yard on a sunny afternoon, noting the decline of summer perennials and enjoying the few remnants of late fall colours.
The lilac leaves that usually provide a rich burgundy display were turning from green to yellow to dead on the ground. A vine maple – wild, and the only one that has stretched its way into the garden from the neighbouring woods – was layered with red on top and bright yellow in the protected areas underneath. The burning bush shrub had yet to show signs of changing colour at all. And the Japanese maple near the post box was rapidly discarding its spiky pumpkin orange foliage.
Later as I sorted through the afternoon’s photos, I was disappointed to discover some were anemic even though the exposure was correct, while others were rich with colour and texture. It took me a minute to realize that shadows within the depths made the difference. Shadows enriched the sun-drenched colour.
That’s true in life, too, and also in our writing. Life’s shadows provide a backdrop to help us appreciate the highlights. In writing, the deeper nuances add subtleties to our characters and plots.
Do you search beneath the surface in life and writing for deeper meaning and enrichment?