Today it occurred to me that with people I've known for a long time, the person they were back in the day is not the person they are now … as if they are two separate people. In the same way, I am tied to the younger version of myself but I am definitely not still that same person. We share memories, but that “older version of me” feels more like a distant cousin than somebody I actually was. In some cases, I like the older version of a person but know that I might not get along at all with the younger version of that person. But that’s okay because they’re like different people … right?
The creative lesson I took from this Noticing is that just as people evolve over time, characters within a narrative can me like versions of themselves as well, shaped by their experiences over time. An author can explore and contrast these various "selves" to create depth, allowing readers to connect with different versions of a character. This gives room to portray character growth, regression, or transformation, making stories richer and more relatable.
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Listening to the Art of Noticing podcast is only one way to get these lessons. Every episode of the podcast also has a complete companion blog post, all of which you can find here.