Tuesday, October 28, 2014

On Writing -- Setting and Description

Greetings from the Hermit-Writer. For My writing friends:

I recently had an epiphany of simplicity about setting that pairs with the rule: Describe only what your character would notice.

The more unique and far-flung the setting you find your character, the more you must layer the description. She in a burger joint? Everyone's been there. You can just tell. But the desert of Sudan? It is more important to show.

Be prepared to describe the goat herd flowing over the nearby hill, the smell and sounds, the texture of grit in the wind, the color of the huts, the straw sticking out of the mud walls, the arid feel of her garment against her flesh, the emotion of being far from home, the stillness of the empty sky, the bite of the sun, the scritch of her boots in the gravel.

You must anchor your reader in a place and mood. You don't have to explain the muzack at Mickey Dees.

Have a great day


-R. Mac Wheeler


11 comments:

  1. het lijkt mij heerlijk om daar te wandelen.

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  2. Thank you. This was great advice. I always struggle with how much description is really necessary. I tend to be on the sparse side. have a great week.

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  3. How I wish that burger places were the alien experiences.

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  4. I believe you hit the nail on the head- and since we all know a nail is grayish and made of metal, I will not digress any more.

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  5. Good advice, Mac. There's so much to think about when you're writing.

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  6. I found this really helpful! I've always wanted to write. Wonderful tip and examples to go along with it.

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  7. Hmm, onlywhat the the character would notice. I like that idea for description. Helps focus the POV.

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  8. It's good advice, particularly the part about writing what the character would see.

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  9. Awesome. It's all about deep POV, eh? I was having fun with that once the epiphany set in, and it was more a joy to omit what the MC wasn't seeing (but the reader knew they were missing things).

    Unleashing the Dreamworld

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