The True Mark of Beauty

This song is called Animals and it's by Martin Garrix. Martin Garrix is an extremely young artist (I think he's 17 now) and as you can see by the over 15 million plays, this song is huge. He was relatively unknown until Animals exploded into a huge hit and now he's one of the rising stars of electro.

The song is well known for the drop, but when I first heard it, I didn't really care about the drop. Instead, the part I adored was the melody. There are these sounds that to me, feel like an animal is running right past you and when you look at it, it runs away. The animals are entirely wide and chaotic, and nowhere in the song do I really feel the idea of animals is explored too well except for those gorgeous sounds.

When I listen to Animals, it is that sound that I crave. It's not a very loud sound; it is subtle, and to me it is almost auditory perfection. It's not the popular part of the song, but I believe it is the strongest part.

In fact, that is one of the most identifiable features to most songs I like these days. The chorus' are all supposed to be epic- I don't have much of a care for them. It is the quiet moments of anticipation as the atmosphere builds that I absolutely adore.

Now, what does this have to do with writing?

As my tastes have developed, getting a high rating from me for a book is becoming increasingly difficult. I'm looking for overall quality of story, I'm looking for something that pleases me, I'm expecting a lot. One way for me to detect how good a book is, is through a very simple test.

Good writing.

I can't tell you about similes and metaphors and cadence because I'm not a very skilled literary reader. For me, good writing means making every single word count. That's the true mark of beauty. It's not just about the crescendos, the action scenes, or the plot twists. It's about making every sentence something worth reading.

I believe the most talented writers- the
Melina Marchettas, the Rainbow Rowells, the John Greens of the world- are the among the highest skilled in their position at creating beauty. This is what I enjoy most about their work. When every word carries a purpose, when every sentence furthers the story. Every word can bring something to a story. Every word can create an atmosphere.

If a writer is able to do this- to milk every sentence for what it's worth, then I think they will have achieved as high a level as any writer can. It's something I see here and there.

Cruel Beauty for one was a beautiful example of this. Rosamund Hodge's prose was luxurious and I was captivated by every word. This is something I strive to do in my writing. This is how I measure my success in a written piece.

It is not within the climax that beauty is discovered. I think the climax can enhance beauty, but I've always thought that true beauty is more quiet; even when the big events come and go, reading a simple scene can make my heart melt and my eyes tear up. That is the true mark of beauty.

But then again, there is also something so beautiful in being thrilled by a so called "guilty pleasure", so beauty is assuredly in the eye of the beholder.



  1. This was a wonderful, thoughtful post! Because I'm reading and reviewing books now I'm getting more critical of books, and when I come across one that just nails creating a believable, perfect story through words I feel very in awe of what the writer has managed to accomplish.

    Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but I think there are books that are pretty much perfect, and some people are just wrong if they don't like them. LOL

    1. Haha I know what you mean! I disagree with Mari sometimes about books and art in general, and when it comes to something I truly love, I know logically that it's possible for other people to not like it, but there's also this feeling of, "This is genius and you're wrong!"


  2. We've definitely become more critical -- raised the bar, so to speak -- of our reading. Nothing wrong with that. The brain is like a muscle; it gets tougher the more you use it. Reading is weight-lifting for the brain, and the stronger it gets, the more weight it needs to keep working out. :)

    1. Absolutely! I kind of like the idea of calling reading a "brain workout" :p



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