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Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Reminder to Myself-IWSG June 2018

It's IWSG Day.  The goal of this blog hop is to share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds. IWSG is the brainchild of Alex Cavanaugh, our brilliant ninja leader. Co-hosts this month are Beverly Stowe McClure, Tyrean Martinson, and Ellen @ The Cynical Sailor!

To read posts from other IWSG members, click here.

One of the hard lessons I continue to force myself to remember is to “write in scene.” It took me a long time to stop summarizing necessary backstory and to write the action as it happened. 

For example, instead of this:  

The fight about the glasses put the wedge in our relationship. Sissy claimed they were hers to keep, but Ma told me on her deathbed she meant for me to have them.
I go back and write it like this:

The fight started over Grandma’s glasses.

“They’re mine,” Sissy said the day after Ma died. Her eyes were cold, angry blue. The same color as the cobalt crystal she insisted she’d be taking.

But I knew the truth. How Ma ordered me to get a pen. How her hand shook as she wrote, the words slumping down the page. How when she was done, she passed the note to me and rested her head on the pillow with her eyes closed, her voice softer than the breath of wind coming in the open widow. I leaned in to hear her. “There. They belong to you. Don’t let anyone tell you different.” 

In a recent weekly newsletter, publishing coach Jane Friedman says: "The only stories that matter are those we inhabit personally, not just with our minds, but through our senses." 

It's another good reminder to make sure our readers experience the story as if they were looking through the lenses of our characters.

Do you find it hard to write "in scene?"