Thursday, March 19, 2009

How would you write an early morning scene?

I mean really write it so that the reader feels the character seeing through hazy eyes, half alert, stumbling over the dog's toy, unsteady hands scooping the grounds from the coffee tin. You know, how you really are when you first wake up, that is if you're not a morning person.

I've been wondering more about how a writer can get an experience or feeling across in a given scene without telling. I know you should use short, choppy sentences to show intensity, and foreboding. And longer sentences seem to slow the read.

But other than through sentence length, how can we reveal mood, state of mind, or experience what the characters are living at that moment in the story world? Is one way through the well-chosen details we provide, perhaps?

Surrendering to Him,



Jody Hedlund said...

Hi Eileen,

Very good question! I just recently finished making some edits after a critique I'd gotten. I had to go deeper inside my brain than I'd ever thought possible in order to show character emotion, especially in a non-cliched way.

I wish there was an easy way or formula for knowing how to show vs. tell. I think if we keep striving harder, like you said, to use specific details that are unique to our characters, we will eventually get it right!

Jessica said...

LOL! I stumble in the mornings.
Scent is a great tool. Touch, hearing, those things work too.
It's a tough balance. I always wonder if my pacing is on or off.

Eileen Astels Watson said...

Definitely utilizing the five senses is good. I guess I need to be more observant of which senses are hightened in certain situations. That might really help.

And I do believe the details chosen really does make a difference.

Jessica said...

I think my senses are fuzzy in the morning. Except hearing. Everything is too loud. LOL