Scene Writing Tips

What do cars, tables and beds have in common? Let’s talk about some basic scene writing principles. New fiction writers tend to create static scenes. By that I mean that there is little action or movement aside from dialogue. Many times these scenes are centered around cars, tables or beds. Are your characters standing or sitting around in many of your scenes? Are you chronicling your character’s time by acting out the alarm clock, the smell of the coffee, the robe and warm fuzzy slippers?

Writing Tip for Today: An easy way to improve your fiction is to write scenes that get the characters moving. Readers tire of seeing the same “set” again and again. Although we know everyone gets up and drinks coffee or tea, reads the paper or drives to work, unless it’s an integral piece of the story, you can leave these parts out. Just say, “She drove to work.”

Look at some of your recent scene drafts. Are there several that take place as your character is getting out of bed, eating or drinking at a table or driving somewhere? Replace these static scenes with scenes where your characters move around. You’ll be surprised at the difference.

About Linda S. Clare

I'm an author, speaker, writing coach and mentor. I teach both fiction and nonfiction writing at Lane Community College and in the doctoral program as expert writing advisor for George Fox University. I love helping writers improve their craft and I'm both an avid reader and writer of stories about those with wounded hearts.

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