Monday, November 22, 2010

Clear, Concise Writing

Getting ideas, scenes, actions from your brain to your computer isn't easy.

Sometimes I wish I could do a mind meld with my computer the way Mr. Spock in the old Star Trek series used to do with machines and organisms. Perhaps then I wouldn't leave out chunks of information the way I do when I write my first drafts of stories.

Just today I was doing rewrites on a scene, and I realized I'd left out some very important information. Facts which were clear in my brain were nowhere on the page.

Worse yet, the rewrites I was doing weren't my first set of rewrites.

Believe it or not, I'm making a point beyond what I'm literally saying.

Writing fiction is a complicated task, and we writers, no matter how many books, stories, etc. we've written, would do well to never forget just how complicated the job is.

It is imperative we remember to take care of all details which make our stories as clear and concise as they can be for our readers. We owe stories at their best to those who look forward to reading what we write.

I fixed what I saw wrong in my scene today, and I intend to read that scene again later this week. I'll go over it and over it until it is the best it can be.

And for all my hours of hard work, the reader will cover the scene in a matter of minutes.

Hours versus minutes--it's worth it even if it seems a bit too disproportionate because the reader's enjoyment is the purpose of every fiction writer's work.

I hope you enjoy whatever you're reading this week.

To all my American readers, I'd like to extend a very happy Thanksgiving. May God bless you and your families in every way.

And to my non-American readers--May God bless you too whether or not you are celebrating Thanksgiving this week.


Fran Shaff, Award-Winning author

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