L&Cs: Rhythm the Key to Everything?

What to make of this? (Link via Fb)

Timber’s Newsletter: Rhythm is the single most important avenue to greatness in everything humans do

Subtitled: “The best musicians, athletes, cooks, writers, and storytellers all have incredible rhythm”

How would this apply to writing, except in obvious examples of prose-poems, or writers who maintain a very distinctive style, from Faulkner to (Cormac) McCarthy?

Then the real question hit me: is rhythm the single most important thing that separates the good from the great in all human pursuits? What it if is?

We already have some science that informs us that rhythm is innate. This study demonstrates that people with no musical training create the same rhythmic structures as trained musicians. But what if rhythm is the thing that makes certain skiers, runners, chefs, writers, and podcasters elite? I think it is.

He cites the example of Anthony Bourdian, and suggests you read your work aloud.

Then about storytellers:

I mean is there even rhythm in storytelling?

Absolutely there is. If you think of rhythm as a regular interval that makes it possible to predict the next beat, then rhythm in storytelling makes sense. Does the next major event of the story happen when you expect? And is it emphasized or deemphasized in the way you expect? Rhythm is something we can all feel, and we can feel if it’s right or wrong. Does the rhythm of the story feel right?

But then the examples he gives are from movies, about how “the way movies are edited with evidence of different scene cut lengths at different places in the films. The faster the scene cuts, the more intense the action of the plot.”

Well, of course. I found the premise of the article fascinating, but got nothing from it actually useful, for writing.

This is weak tea. I wouldn’t normally post such a thing, but given current circumstances, I don’t have time to find anything else for today. Gotta go.

This entry was posted in Links & Comments, Narrative. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.