Turning the tables of my mind and spilling their contents on the floor. The complexities organized each in their own way, are too confusing. When its all a mess on the floor is when the complexities become simplicity. I can only see clearly when it seems like everyone else cannot.
So, writing upsidedown. This lesson will be more mechanics than technique, though anything coming from me will likely be an original thought stream or process of writing.
Writing upsidedown, simplified, is taking a project, passage, or even a single sentence and flipping your intention for it to the direct opposite. If you wished a man to walk through a forest and get attacked, then write the scene as him passing through entirely unmolested. It’s a flip-flop of inspiration and twist that keeps the project fresh and alive to you, inspiring spontaneous thought and ideas for that particular area of your story.
Uniquely patterned and trademarked, so to speak, writing upsidedown is a tremendous benefit to those who struggle for ideas or frequently experience writer’s block. On the one hand, you experience what it would be like for your character to undergo the exact opposite of your intentions for it. On the other hand, based upon what you learned by writing the opposite of your intentions, you better understand and grasp how you would like to write those initial intentions.
In other words, once you flip your writing to the converse, you learn what you like and dislike about that viewpoint. Then, you can revert back and have an understanding of both sides of the scene or section. Knowing the effects and consequences of both paths and decisions, you can write one or the other more proficiently and informed.
True, this method prolongs and belabors the bulk writing segment of the project, but it does add an invigoration, an intelligence, and an inspiration to the work; and also an added renewal of love and vitalization to the author for the work.
Writing upsidedown is unique, in that it forces us to completely flip our perspective. We are made to view the area we are working on in the opposite way that we would wish to, or had intended to view it. I find that I am more competent to relate a fact or idea when I understand both extremes of it.
This method of writing is also valuable to the author who is unsure of which path to take in his story. Perhaps you have two alternate endings that are totally different, and can’t choose between them. My suggestion: write them both out, then choose which you like better. I can assure you that after writing both scenes you will have embellishments to make to the one you decide upon based on what you learned by writing the other.
It’s a tough principal to grasp, but it’s a great method to write by, and not a bad principal to live by. To fully understand your opposition on a subject or arguement, you need to live their side. Learn their situation and see things from their perspective, then make your decision. You may even affirm and build your own viewpoint from having this new knowledge of the other side of the arguement.
Let’s not live uninformed, trapped within a single mindset. Let’s write, let’s live upsidedown.
This may be a literature and linguistics taboo, but I’m going to make an addendum and a retraction on that last statement. It’s important to note, that if you are not cemented into your worldview and perspective, when you try to aproach a problem using the upsidedown method, if you’re not careful, you will fall off the earth.
I’m not telling you to put yourself in ISIS’s shoes and try to understand their motives, many have strayed and joined Islam because of such thinking. However, I am telling you to look at both sides and study them before making a decision. Most importantly, know who you are, what you are, and where you stand. Don’t let what you see effect who you are, unless the Spirit of God Himself tells you that something needs to change.
As always, thanks for reading.
—the anonymous novelist