Tuesday, December 22, 2009

My Bad -- Oops!

So, today is Tuesday and it should be Monday. Monday just whisked by me so fast I never even realized it was there. I am truly sorry. That's what happens when you get lost in your weekends.

Therefore, being late, I need to find a good topic for discussion. How about...

Writing Tricks.

How do you create scenes or settings? Do you use an image or picture to help you describe the setting? Have you re-envisioned the argument you had and used it for a scene? Looked out the window? Let music carry you away?

A good writer doesn't just say he walked into a room. That room has to have items; be it furniture, clutter, moving boxes, office equipment, operating table, etc. etc. There is something to sets that room apart from others. How do you describe it?

Again, your heroine doesn't just ride into the woods. There are trees. Are they large and looming oaks or majestic redwoods? A glen of first year birch? Crunching pine needles? Are there streams, slopes, rocks?

Is it a car? Or a sleek Maseratti, classic Rolls or even a clunky Model-T? Giving the letters BMW or SUV helps to define the vehicle. Car is so banal.

So what tricks do you use to establish your writing scenes to enlighten the reader?

Share a trick.


  1. Scene description can be tough for me because I like to get right down to the action. But I know that I have to slow down and think about making the scene as real as I can for the reader.

    My trick? I think of each of the five senses and try to include as many as I can in an important scene. Most of the time I need to remind myself of taste, smell and tactile sensation because I concentrate on the visual and auditory details. But it's the first three that can make a scene really come alive. JMR

  2. My trick is to imagine the very first thing my character notices upon entering a new scene and show that to the reader. Then radiate out from that one thing to the rest of the scene. This method serves double duty, in establishing the scene and telling a reader about the character by showing what he/she immediately notices.

    People may see things all at once, but they notice things in small batches. I try to remember to describe things in batches as the character notices them, sort of sketching the reader's mental map outward from that one initial impression.