Rachel Neumeier

Fantasy and Young Adult Fantasy Author

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Working description into your story

Over at Mad Genius Club, a quite funny example of putting description into dialogue.

This ties into the “talking heads” type of scene I linked to yesterday.

“Bill blinked from where he sat at his desk, looking across him at the red spires dotting the desert landscape outside the office window. “My writer’s group said I needed more description and sense of place,” he said. “But then when I put in description, they told me I had stopped the action and given them indigestible infodumps.”

“Ah,” Mike said. “Did you?”

“Perhaps a tadbit, but dang it all, man, how is one supposed to convey things like new technology without a ten paragraph break explaining the history and how it works?”

Also, the last lines of this scene are delightfully unexpected.

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2 Comments Working description into your story

  1. Mike S.

    “most of the time, do you pause to think of the history of your shaver, or how Earth people used to scrape their faces with blades every morning before inventing the exfulicator? ”

    I totally do! Maybe not all the time, but reasonably often. And when I read or watch older material, I’m always looking at the little differences in technology and society and turning them over in my head.

    Though I try not to inflict it on other people. (Aside from L., who legally has to put up with it.)

  2. Rachel

    Mike, of course you do.

    Actually, I think of this kind of thing related to medicine. THANK GOD FOR EXCEDRIN. I am so glad I don’t have to just live in pain the way everyone in the world used to.

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