aprilhenry (aprilhenry) wrote,

How to show, not tell

One of my publishers has an occasional bookgroup to discuss writing books. The most recent discussion was on Janet Burroway's Writing Fiction.

We're always told to show, not tell. But this little exercise from the book is going to help me think of concrete sensory details to do that. Maybe it will help you, too:
Begin by putting yourself in the mind of your character and focusing on setting.
- What sounds can you hear in this place?
- What is the most distance sound you can hear, the sound that you might not notice if you weren’t paying special attention?
- What smells do you associate with this place?
- What are you wearing? How does it feel against your skin?
- What else can you touch? Not only with your fingertips, but with your whole body-the small of your back, for instance, or the soles of your feet?
- What can you taste?
- What colors do you associate with this place?
- What do you see to the left, overhead, on the horizon?
- What emotions does this place evoke in you?

site stats

Add This Blog to the JacketFlap Blog Reader
  • Post a new comment


    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded 

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.