Sunday, February 21, 2010
Just a little writing tidbit--Show, not Tell
A very good writer friend of mine pointed out to me this week that as writers, we must remember to show and not tell. This can sometimes be as simple as saying, "The color rose to her cheeks and she sniffed loudly before scratching her nose." --instead of flat out saying,"She lied." The color and the scratch to the nose will tell the reader that she is embarrassed about something. The other sentences in the paragraph will set the stage for the lie. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in what we are trying to tell in our story, that we forget to show until our faithful critique partner points it out and saves the day. The word "seem" is a definite no-no too. So if you are new to writing, and are ready for a great piece of learning, there it is: Show, not tell. But don't get so wrapped up in making it so perfect that you kill your story in the process. Tell your story first, then you can fix your tells, or grammatical errors in the editing process. I learned that from Kim Vogel Sawyer, a great friend and a great writer. Glean all you can from other writers. I haven't met a mean one yet!!
Posted by J M F at 9:29 PM