Omit To Improve Your Story?

Hemingway was counted among the lost generation. Today, are we living with a spoonfed generation? Has a generation which has been conditioned by an educational system that teaches to standardized testing to be little more than mind-numb automatons, regurgitating information and data as a demonstration of intelligence, now having difficulty grasping Papa’s concept of omission as a means to improve story?

Is it possible, that because of the US educational system, our youth now have  poorly developed imaginations, and require every piece of a story to not only be laid out, but spelled out in minute detail? Are they incapable of filling in the blanks, because they have been destroyed by an education reliant on multiple choice?

When I read movie or book reviews written by people in their twenties, one of the common complaints is that there are “gaps” in the production. Don’t these reviewers understand that a skilled writer may be doing this on purpose?

I am left to wonder, that in trying to improve myself as a storyteller by adapting not only Hemingway’s concise and compact writing style, but incorporating his undervalued Iceberg Theory, am I losing the interest of potential readers?

Am I wrong in my presumption that by omitting parts of the story, they will understand the layered depth of the world I am creating? Or, is their perception limited only to what the words which appear on the page, or screen, tell them?

Does the reader understand that War Springs Eternal is a tale of a damaged WWI veteran, suffering from the trauma of what he not only saw, but what he was forced to do? Or are they merely seeing a story about a man who fought, came home, and moved?

I have been enjoying writing novellas without great exposition, encouraging readers not only to interpret the subtext, but for they themselves to become part of the story. I know what has been omitted from the narrative, because I have written those parts, and then deleted them from the completed story. It is painful to remove prose that means so much to me, however I am convinced, that by removing some detail, I am creating a richer experience for the reader. It is my hope that you do as well.




“Who am I?”

I am an independent, self-published teller of tales. I am an author of scarcely any renown. However, as a storyteller, I know who I am, and with that persona, I am both confident and comfortable. I invite you to visit my website,  ShortStoryScribe.com and/or Amazon Author Page, if you are so inclined please purchase a copy and leave a review.

Thank you,

Joe

amazon.com/author/docjoeleonardi

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9 thoughts on “Omit To Improve Your Story?

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  1. Very well said. Sometimes I read stories and say to myself ” does the author think I am dumb” and ” sometimes the meaning just take wings and fly away.

    But I agree with you. I believe a good story is one which is open to many interpretations and that is only possible if the story has gaps. It’s part of the fun. Why limit our imagination.

    Like

    1. Actually, no. Back when I was making a comfortable living, I vacationed in Key West quite a bit. Initially, I was fascinated more with him than his writing. I started reading him a few years ago, just for pleasure, and then I started reading him to help my writing. While I don’t mimic him, I do try to learn from how he writes

      Thank you for taking the time to read and comment.
      Joe

      Liked by 1 person

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