More on Blah,blah,blah,blah,blah

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Further to the blog post below, read here for a more in-depth take on 'Showing vs Telling'.

And Cranky Reader made this comment over on her blog: (why is it that both CC and Sandra Brown use a lot of tell and not a lot of show in their books? Obviously they're more focused on storytelling than writing, but geez...)

I know what she's saying here, and yet, I sort of look at it in the flipmode. Despite the presence of the word 'telling', I think of storytelling as showing. Remember those great storytellers you've known, whether it was a grandparent, or a camp counselor? They projected emotion, using facial expression, and hand movements, changing the tone and decibel of their voice, adding asides that gave insight into the characters, setting and situation. They were 'engaging' you, setting the stage. Putting on a 'show'.

'Writing', could mean anything from a grocery list to an article. For me, it refers to a process, to something a little more "dry bones", technical, factual, 'telling'. It can engage me, but most likely it's on a more cerebral level than a gut/emotional one. Preferably, I'd like a bit of both in my reading (novels), but would choose the latter over the former, any day. I can read textbooks or the newspaper to exercise the ol grey matter.

My final argument? How many times have you heard someone complain (re a novel) that the storytelling got in the way of the writing? How many times have you heard, or said, the reverse?

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Amie Stuart said...

You know.....see what napping does--that's the height of procrastination but i did write five pages before i napped. I had to sleep on your post LOL. You know I write pretty tight, but I've had contest judges comment on my ms where I "should" take out words and tighten stuff up. But if I did that would be messing with characterization, because that's how my characters talk or even think sometimes.

Weird...i think i need another nap

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