You don't have to be a gun expert to write about guns. In most cases, you're actually better off being as non-specific as possible. Getting into a lot of details about actions and calibers and so on is a sure-fire way to put most of your readers to sleep. When details matter, though, it's important to get them right. Failing to do so can turn readers off to your writing.
By Annette Lyon Imagine that you’re reading an Agatha Christie novel. In the last chapter, Poirot calls the cops, tells them who committed the murder, and goes on his way, saying that of course everyone knows why Jeremy Jones is the one being carted off to jail. After your confusion clears, you’d probably hurl the … Continue reading The Art of Dropping Breadcrumbs
How many times do you find yourself in a waiting room, on a bus, sitting outside a restaurant waiting for the rest of your party . . . and to pass the time, you pull out your phone. You might be thinking it's the perfect opportunity to catch up on social media or to shoot off some … Continue reading Mindful Details: Paying Attention to the World Around You
I have always been a line-level writer. I live for poetic prose, for dazzling descriptions, for the sentences that make you feel like you're sipping something delightful as you read. I love writing that makes you see the world differently, that pulls you so deeply into its narrative that you can't seem to leave that … Continue reading Lyrical Writing vs. Purple Prose
In the past couple of weeks I've been very conscious of a certain subject that has been driving wedges between friends, family, and otherwise level-headed people. This particular subject has been disputed across the Internet sparking Twitter wars and Facebook flame battles. And let's not forget the memes. Good god, the memes! The subject I … Continue reading Going to the Movies and Learning Things
A few days ago, I asked my writing friends, "Have you ever had trouble with a concept, such as plotting, character development, dialogue, or pacing and there was a specific piece of advice or a book or an article that helped you in a profound way?" I was looking for light bulb moments, a sudden bit of … Continue reading 15 Writers’ Light Bulb Moments
He was just an elderly Japanese man eating a Dorito. But somehow this image remained with me long after our boat ride. I was surprised when my 14 year old mentioned this to me later that day.It intrigued him too.“Mom, did you see how slow he was eating that chip?” Spoken well for a 14 … Continue reading Want to Leave an Impression? Write the Insignificant Details