Friday, 12 January 2007

Primary Representational Systems

This morning I began work on the second draft of my short story.
Last September, I was fortunate enough to win the first ever Litopian Laureate award.
You can check out Litopia (and my ss) for yourself here (more on Litopia soon):
I have decided to enter the third competition (although my decision to submit or not hangs in the balance).

Just before Christmas, I was hanging out in Cafe Rouge with some lecturer and ex-lecturer chums. One of them is now the Director of Education for a company called Confetti. I'd met him once before but had not really spoken with him.
He composes sonic soundscapes, and once studied hypnosis under Paul McKenna. We got on very well and chatted for some five hours; we discussed, amongst other topics, patterns and repetition and pauses, the N400 response, and something called NLP which is Neuro Linguistic Programming.
Fascinated by the similarities between his techniques and mine, I've been doing a little research and am experimenting with PRS (Primary Representational Systems). The idea is that we all perceive the world differently, and it has been suggested that we each have a primary means of evaluating our surroundings - that you might primarily use the sense of hearing and I might use the sense of touch, for example. Having just finished reading MJ Hyland's Man Booker-shortlisted Carry me Down, it was clear to me that she is a kinaesthetic person - that she uses the sense of touch predominantly in her writing. My feeling, however, is that some people have a primary RS and others don't.
When we write, we create an experience for the reader; we employ the five main senses, and possibly even those 'fringe' senses such as sense of hunger and sense of needing a wee.
This technique is also used in preparing a subject for hypnotic suggestion; essentially, the subject is conditioned to focus inwardly in much the same way that the writer draws the reader into the narrative and the outside world is removed.
To this end, and considering a number of choices for opening my short story, I have decided (for now, at least) to open kinaesthetically: the sun beats upon my protag's skin and she paddles her feet in the cool water of a rockpool. I am attempting to draw my reader into my world and have them feel that sun and the water; to create a sense of peace and relaxation such that they are receptive.
With this in place, I hope to create an emotional response by juxtaposing this tranquillity with ever-increasing violence, beginning with suggestion/subliminal themes.
More on emotional topography and subliminal techniques anon.

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