An opening I’m tired of

John Smith did something as another thing happened. "Unexpected statement that sets the tone of the story," he said.  Stories that open this way somehow lose my interest in an instant, no matter how interesting the things John is doing or saying are. Why? Because the structure of the opening is so familiar it induces …

Advertisements

Annoying example of telling after you showed

I saw an advertisement recently for an app for an insurance company. The ad starts with a dark sky and stormy night over a large house with flickering lights. Scary music is playing and an old guy is looking terrified like it's haunted. Cut to a family having dinner and a baby is flailing away …

Don’t tell me what I already know

There are two ways to reveal a surprise or secret you've been hinting at in a story. Well, I'm sure there's more than two but let's be black and white for a minute. There's a good way, and a bad way. There's a way that makes your reader smile and say 'ah, yes I suspected that' …