Why Finding Magic in the Mundane is the Secret Ingredient That Will Change Your Writing
You're sitting outside a café chatting with someone you've never met before. There's a bistro table nestled between you covered in brightly patterned mosaic tiles. Strings of white lights criss-cross overhead illuminating the sultry evening.
You've got your favourite fancy brew cupped gently in front of you. The unmistakable comforting aroma of French roast and frothy milk. But let's face it: you've probably skipped the sugar-laced treat in the name of first impressions.
It feels intimate. Even if all the other tables are full. And maybe you've even got a few butterflies twisting around in your stomach. The evening holds the hint of...potential amidst the twinkling lights, cobblestones and cups of coffee.
How do you connect? How do you find common ground with this stranger?
You know, once you've made it past the superficial topics of weather and coffee and the latest thing you binge-watched on Netflix.
You swap stories.
Little anecdotes of your lives. Small moments that make us human. Stories we recognize and think, "Oh man, I totally get that!"
Rarely do we connect over the big, life-changing, put-it-on-your-resume moments. Though we often rush to share those first. To impress rather than relate. I've been guilty of this too. Want to hear about my trip to Europe? I'll gladly regale you. Or the time I swam with dolphins in the warm Caribbean waters. What...you haven't done that? Well, let me tell you all about it.
But real connections are made in the mundane moments that provide a genuine common ground. Where we see that we are "more alike my friends, than we are unalike." And whether it's face to face over coffee or the way we communicate with each other through the written word it's the small moments that foster a sense of mutual understanding.
And it's the writer's job to take those small moments and make them seem just a bit magical.
As a copywriter, it's my job to help people connect with companies or their products or services. Or to help altruistic donors connect with charities.
I do it through storytelling. I do it through capturing the magic of small moments in a way that strikes an emotional chord wth potential clients.
But I think this idea of looking for magic in the mundane applies to so much more than copywriting. It applies to virtually all kinds of writing and that's what makes it so powerful.
As writers, we share stories of small moments with candor and honesty that can mark the beginning of a genuine relationship between reader and storyteller. Stories that emotionally resonate. Stories that can bring us closer, so we feel less alone. And for one moment like there's another person on the other side of the web page who gets us.
Life is a mosaic of moments. Most moments that on their own seem insignificant - like the bits of broken tile. But when we arrange them together we can create meaning and beauty - we can create art. And that art had the power to bring us together through the story it tells.