Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Writing Conference

I went to a writing conference last week. I took my mom with me. The conference was a sort of birthday present/mother's day gift to her. She loved it. And I enjoyed being with her.

I asked my mom what her favorite part about the conference was.
She said that, other than the food (which was delicious), she liked the workshop we went to about show, not tell.
Here are a few tips on how to show instead of tell a story.
  • Use the 5 senses. Try to have at least one per page. But don't forget the overlooked ( or undersmelled) ones like touch, taste, and smell.
  • Let the reader SEE what is happening. Include tiny details such as facial expression, gestures, setting.
  • Never say your character is sad. Show us their body language and their expressions so we can see what they're feeling.
  • Be specific. Avoid vague words such as tall, big, small, etc. because they are only big or small when compared to something else. If a man is tall, then say he had to duck through the doorway and when he stood up straight he made the 8ft ceiling seem low.
  • Instead of saying what happened, put it in scene. Let us see it happen. Rather than saying, she made cookies, let the reader watch her shuffling around the kitchen with all the cupboards open and flour dusting her eyebrows.
There you have some tips.
If you can think of any more then let me know!
I'd love to have your comments.


  1. That is great advice! Thank you so much for posting about it. :-)

  2. Great post! I was at the conference too. Lots of great info! :)