Tuesday, 21 November 2017

NaNoWriMo: Day 21 ~ The Art of Description

It's true that I'm mostly focussing on getting the words down this month, but because I've been writing every day, and I'm on track (I can't believe I am!), I've also been trying to pay a little attention to my craft.

Yesterday, I wrote some pretty good description—which isn't always the easiest to do. Struggling? I researched a couple of tips. The important thing to remember is that you don’t have to describe everything. You just want to paint a picture of the scene using a few key words. There are a couple of tricks to this.

DETAIL: Try and be specific, where possible. That’s what will bring the scene to life. Don’t just say the ground was littered with garbage. Tell the reader what the garbage is. For example: Crumpled paper, faded candy wrappers and rusted tin cans littered the ground. I bet you get a good sense of what the scene looks like just from that, right?

USE THE FIVE SENSES. Taste, smell, touch, sound, and sight—they're all important. You don’t have to use ALL of them in one scene, but it’s a good idea to use at least one. Don’t always rely on sight, though. That one’s easy.

Okay, let’s look at this description for a fall scene.

Mindy and Samuel crept through the dark forest. Their feet crackled on the dry leaves, as noisy as fire crackers in the otherwise quiet. Mindy rubbed her arms and shivered but she couldn’t decide if it was from the cool breeze that blew through the trees or the fear lodged in her throat.

So…what senses did I use? Can you pick out the specific details that make the paragraph come to life?

Gotta jet! May the words be with you!

~ Chase Superman Duffy

Word Count: 3,500 <-- I pushed those last 10 words to get this rounded number. Ha ha.

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