20 May 2008

demonstrate don't recount

In the Electric Spec submissions pile, I've found a few stories recently in which the author recounts the story events. This is not as effective as demonstrating the events! Our life experiences of "telling" stories may work against us when it comes time to write a story.
IMHO, what we need in a modern publishable story is something you can act out. In fact, one of my critique partners is prone to acting out scenes at critique group! Of course, your stories should also include beautiful descriptions, intriguing flawed characters, and whatever else you like. :)

Authors, ask yourselves: does your story contain stuff you can act out? If not, try writing it more in-the-moment. Demonstrate what happens!

1 comment:

ssas said...

I spend more than my fair share acting out scenes in my study as I write. Yup, I get up and move around, have conversations with invisible characters, and enlist my children to choreograph fight scenes.

It's ten times more fun that way, and more convincing.