Thursday, December 16, 2010

Details, details, details


People, novels, and movies are taken to a special level when they focus on the right details.

My friends with gorgeous eyes? They wear enhancing eyeliner and jet black mascara.

The ones with nice skin? Hints of blush or bronzer

What makes great movies great? A character with loveable quirks that come out in random ways...camera angles that blur out backgrounds, music that sets the tone...

Now, how about novels?

The other day I was reading about the importance of details. Apparently, an "amateur writer" can be distinguished by their need to describe anything and everything.

The key comes in illustrating those elements that show character or extract a unique aspect of the setting.

Is your character riding the subway?
-Talk about what he/she is listening to on the iPod, what he/she notices, where he/she is going....

Is your character with her friends?
-What is unique about them? What do they laugh like? How do they speak? Do they have any scars or marks that distinguish them? How did they all become friends? How is your main character in relation to them?


Ideally, you can weave character, setting, and plot into a single scene! Readers tend to become bored by scenes that do not accomplish multiple purposes.

Hope this helps!