Do you go to the movies or watch movies on video? Ever notice how a movies starts? Nearly every film begins with what is called the “establishing” shot. The opening credits are shown before or after the establishing shot; or sometimes the opening credits are shown during the establishing shot. But a film is seldom without this very important device. The establishing shot orients the viewer, establishing a frame of reference for the rest of the story. Short short and very short story writers can learn a great deal from this. I know I have. I was a student and then a member of the Pittsburgh Filmmakers for about three years.
The establishing shot is usually done in wide angle, taking in as much as possible. Then the camera moves in closer to begin the story.
Many times sudden fiction also has an establishing shot: The beginning or introduction. And it serves the same purpose: To orient the reader so the reader can then follow the rest of the story.
If you’re a writer (blogger), take care with your establishing shot. You don’t want your reader to start the journey lost. The reader might decide to quit before the journey ends.
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