Date: 04/23/2008 04:53 PM Title: Chapter 1
Wow! You’ve only been writing for two months? I am seriously impressed. I know how it is to want feedback about writing, so that’s what I’m going to give. J I really like this story. One thing I’ve been working on in my writing is “show, don’t tell.” Don’t know if you’ve run into that one but it is the heart of good writing (along with punctuation, grammar, and logic.) Show me, instead of telling me, what the characters are doing and let me fill in the blanks. For instance: "Damn you, Charlie Weasley," she landed a hard slap across his face as the tears continued to trickle down her cheeks. She had waited half her life to hear him say that he loved her, and only after she was another man's wife had he said the words. "Don't you dare say you love me. Not now. Not after I've waited for you to say those words for so long."After she slaps him, you write two lines telling me what you show me through what she says next. So, if you wanted to show, you could:"Damn you, Charlie Weasley," she landed a hard slap across his face as the tears continued to trickle down her cheeks. "Don't you dare say you love me. Not now. Not after I've waited for you to say those words for so long." This is a short piece, so some “tell” is going to be warranted, but try doing this: “Charlie Weasley had once been her world. Today, she was someone else's wife.” That’s tell. Instead, you could: “She followed the dip where his spine nestled between the muscles in his back and the tips of her fingers twitched. She pressed them together and twirled her wedding ring around her finger.” You already show us that he was her whole world throughout the piece, like above, where she tells him she’s been waiting to hear him tell her he loves her, and also here: “The warmth of his neck was familiar and when she sucked on the lobe of his ear it elicited the groans from deep within his throat that she knew so well.”And even there, you could: “She ran her tongue up his neck. When he groaned, she smiled. ‘I always could make you moan.’” This is, literally, the only thing that didn’t work: “The tears came unbidden to roll down her cheeks at the hurt tone of his voice.” It just sounds a bit clunky. I use the word “unbidden” too, and I usually end up erasing it, mostly because it is redundant. I’m sure she didn’t intend to start crying, for instance. And the “hurt tone of his voice” is just tell – we can tell he’s hurt by what he said, so don’t worry about telling us. So:“His outline blurred before her. ‘Charlie, did you think I would wait for you forever?’" In the next bit you tell us he wipes away her tears, so we know she’s crying. So that’s a tiny bit – hope it’s what you’re looking for! I do like your writing style. It flows and takes me right into the world you are creating. I had to laugh at the ending, as the first chapter of my own story ends almost the exact same way, but with different characters. Cheers! And keep writing! I’ll read some more of your stuff.
Theresa (penname: 108)
Author's Response: Thanks so much. I do struggle w/ the show not tell. Any hints are always welcome!!!!