December 22, 2016

Write with a Childlike Wonder

By Annette Cole Mastron, Communications Director for Southern Writers Magazine

Last week, the holiday shows were abundant on television. "I don't get it, how do you manage to always see the good in everything," asks Adam Goldberg of his grandpa "Pops" in the ABC show The Goldbergs. Pops replies, "it's easy if you never lose your childlike wonder, it doesn't matter how old you are people like us always have it." Pops then admonishes Adam "to promise him one thing, always hold onto to that wonder, no matter what."

A friend stated they were just not in a holiday mood. I encouraged them to decorate a tree. Don't have the energy to use the ornaments from the past with all the memories attached, just make your own with paper, pine cones and stuff you have in your home and yard. Glitter and glue are your new best friend. Take pictures as your tree progresses. Share it on Facebook and encourage others. New tree, new ornaments and new traditions. Invite friends over to see your tree.

However, the best people to invite to a decorated home are the "little people" who we adults call children. They have a sense of wonder that is contagious. They will find amazement in items we adults take for granted and complain about dragging down from the attic or locating in the garage. Through a child's eyes, you can get a true sense of a positive perspective on life which influences our words we write.

So what if this holiday season you take a minute to watch a child as they discover a new world which we may have forgotten? I recently visited with a friend whose granddaughter was experiencing the joy of her decorated home. As I watched her stand on tippy toes gazing on the tabletop village I wondered what she was thinking. The table scape had Santa and his sleigh complete with reindeers circling the village. Was this little one wondering who lived in the snowy village with Santa flying high above? The child was mesmerized by the scene and stared at it while the adults at the party just went on their way.

As authors, do we really take in all we see during the holiday season with the wonderment of this child? Or are we too busy rushing from activity to activity? I'm guilty of this too. However, after watching this child I have decided that I'm going to savor the season and try to capture the wonderment of this small child. Who knows, I may write a story about a little girl who saves Santa from flying around the same snow covered village.

The narrator of The Goldbergs holiday show said "if you truly love something you never grow out of it. That's the thing about the holidays, even the biggest Scrooge might be moved by a sense of wonder."

This holiday join me and find your sense of wonder. It may spark you with the perfect story idea. 

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