It’s Not What You Know

Last week’s blog was such a success as far as I was concerned that I wanted to thank everyone that dropped by to comment, visit, etc.


So, how many of you have been told to write what you know? Right, it sounds kinda overdone, old, even cheesy. Yeah, I get that.

Okay, how about writing something that not only you know about but what everyone else knows too.

Stop laughing; It’s not impossible. Because if you are a writer, then you are a master on this subject—human feelings.

Emotions draw the reader into what we do. I think that is why descriptions don’t fascinate me, nor do stage directions, and they never will. These activities must bring about a reaction in the character. Not all of them are going to be visceral, but they’ll touch me. Awaken something familiar and I’ll know I am walking in their imaginary shoes.

Someone burns their finger. They pop it into their mouth, blow on rememberance day in Canada, in memory of Candian veterans, poppy picture, poppy image,the injured area, mutter under their breath or scream at the top of their lungs. It’s that simple act in a story that makes our characters living breathing people.

So the next time you write, think about how your characters feel. Let them breathe. Let them loose. Make sure each one has their say, expresses their honest reactions to everything around them, and watch them come to life for your readers.

Anything else I needed to include? Tell me.


10 responses to “It’s Not What You Know

  1. Only other thing I can add…we all hear about creating conflict in our stories. Conflict doesn’t always have to be external. Sometimes it can come from within. To make your characters even more alive, think about having their emotions conflict with who they are. Think want-to-be surgeon who passes out at the sight of blood. Don’t only show the act of passing out, but show the conflict. Then, build up over the course of the story the steps that person takes to overcome that conflicting emotion.

    Great post, Emaginette!!

  2. Great post and sooooo true. The character is why we like or dislike a book.

  3. Your posts always make me think, Em. You’re so right about making sure to add emotion. If our readers don’t connect with our characters we’re in trouble. 🙂

  4. Great post. And I totally agree. I give my characters free range of emotions and let them tell me what they feel.

  5. Ah, very true. Like you, I like to experience the characters feelings/emotions through his actions and whatever conflicts he is going through. Descriptions and actions scenes might be extremely well done, but if the feelings aren’t well done, enough to feel what the characters is feeling, I mostly likely wont enjoy the story. Great post, Em! 😀

If you're new to writing, ask me anything and if you're experienced, feel free to share what you know. Learning something new in the craft is always welcome.

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