Tuesday, November 20, 2007

It seems that this journey is full of tweaks and fixes. In the recent past I finally got that a story has multiple layers. Every scene needs to be filled with description for grounding the reader, emotion to pull the reader in, and the character's process to give the reader something to connect with. In my writing I had neglected one of these consistently.

I've got the hang of it and am including all of the above in each scene. But wouldn't you know it, now I'm overdoing it. A little too much description and you lose the flow of the story. Too much emotion and your characters become unbelievable. And who cares about every little thought that passes through the character's head.

It's easier for me to think of it as good cooking. When preparing any dish, you need to add the right seasonings and never too much. A pinch of this and you're doing fine, but add a handful, it's not edible.

Gauging just the right amount of description is usually best judged by someone else. Too often your story is so ingrained in your mind that it's difficult for you as the writer to see if you've strayed from its path.

It is so easy to fall in love with the layout of a scene. You think you're painting this beautiful picture, but if overdone the story becomes about the picture and not your character's behavior or adventure.

So I'm off to tweak a bit of description and get my story back on the right road. Next time I'll pay better attention to the trail of breadcrumbs I laid.

No comments: