Monday, May 16, 2011

Refining Your Writing

LDStorymakers Conference Notes #1:
This week I’ll share some thoughts from Angela Eschler of Eschler Editing on Refining Your Writing. Angela hit upon various topics of interest. I’m certain you’ll find something of interest too.
Conflict: Characters need goals—even little ones—in each scene. Action is interesting but the reader needs to wonder about the characters. The end of a scene should meet with disaster toward the goal. The character then has to do something else to accomplish the goal, moving the plot forward. Pacing slows when the reader loses track of whatever the character cares about/the goal is interrupted. The point of view should stay with the character needing the goal or the one who is preventing it. Page Turner Tip: End the chapter before the goal is met.
Setting: Incorporate the characters into the setting; give a sense of them in the description. You can use the setting as the voice of the characters and tell their emotions without saying it directly. A character stuck in a setting can add tension.
Hook: Anything that makes the reader want more, questioning, create tension, emotionally grabs the reader. The hook should hint at the plot problem together with emotions. It foreshadows more than one problem or theme. Quirky characters and settings are hooking. Take it deeper.
Endings: A little loss and a little triumph equal a satisfying ending. Earned endings are best.
Power of Language/Trimming: Can you cut 2-4 words from each sentence for economy? It should not change the info or meaning. Use Search and Find. Cut anything repetitive where you’ve used different words. Don’t spell out what can be told in other ways. Make certain that metaphors start with something familiar and are applied to the unfamiliar. If they don’t share insight, cut it.
Find a tidbit you liked? I'll share more next Monday. Thanks for stopping by.

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