Wednesday

HELICOPTER WRITING or THE WHITE JEEP PURSUIT

How many of us struggle with the show, not tell aspect of writing? I think we're all guilty of that and have to scour the pages to make sure we don't bore our poor readers to tears.

Lately, I read some pages from a friend's WIP (which is quite action-packed) and finally realized why I felt so detached from her writing. It was like I was in a helicopter, hovering over the scene. Great action, but what I really wanted was to be in the scene - not above it.

How many of us watched O.J. and his buddy ride the freeway at a snail's pace? Did any of you wonder what the heck they were talking about as a string of police vehicles plodded along behind them? THAT'S what my friend needs to do. THAT'S what we all need to do.


As a writer, we need to climb into the back seat with a tape recorder and then transcribe all that good stuff onto the page. Get inside your character's heads. Smell the sweat as O.J. realizes he's neck deep in doo doo. Hear the pain in his voice as he talks to Detective Tom Lange. Remember, at that this moment in time he was distraught and didn't know he wouldn't go to prison - for now.

It's our duty to drag the reader into the scene, wring them out and have them blow out a soft puff of air when they're done. If they have to set the book down for a few seconds to catch their breath and compose themselves - we've done our job.

I know a writer has been successful when I laugh out loud, wipe away a tear and heave a sigh when the H/h declare their love. We all have a favorite author who brings out these reactions. Mine is Kristan Higgins. Jill Shalvis runs a close second.


NOTE:
In no way do I mean to infer that O.J. is guilty of murdering Nicole Brown-Simpson or Ron Goldman. I used this reference in history as it is iconic and will give writers a strong visual.

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