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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Chrys’ Writing Rules: Don’t Leave Anything Out

When you’re caught up in writing the details of a story and trying to get that story down on paper, you might unintentionally forget important information that your readers need in order to understand the story you are trying to tell them.

This had actually happened to me with the first book in my series. The setting for my supernatural-thriller series is an unknown world very similar to ours, but I didn’t expand on that thought thoroughly for a reader to understand that.

After one of my friends read the beginning of my story, she pointed this out to me. Frankly, I was shocked. I couldn’t believe she didn’t see it. Then it hit me that I didn’t explain everything as I should have. I had to go back to the beginning of my story and add in a couple of paragraphs to coherently describe the world in my book. 

This is part of a paragraph that I had to add to the beginning of my book.
Photo by Chrys Fey

When you’re writing, give your readers all the information. Don’t leave them scratching their heads and desperately trying to figure out the story you’re telling them. It should be easy for readers to gather details about the setting, plot, and especially the characters.

If your story requires background information, make sure you tell it all and in a manner that your readers can comprehend. Just because you see and understand the story in your head doesn’t mean that your readers will. After all, they’re not in your head, but you can get them close by putting all of your thoughts about your story on paper then systematically adding those details into your story where they should be.

Not sure if what you wrote will make sense to a reader? Do you want to know if your story has all the facts that it should? Give it to a trusted person to read who can report back to you their opinion. Even if you just give them the very beginning, what they tell you can be extremely valuable.


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