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It's All In The Details


  I think one of the most overlooked, yet most important parts of writing is details.
  A lot of people think details are silly and they don't matter, but I feel like they actually bring the story to life. To me, working in your characters favorite color, song, food etc... into the story makes the character seem more real. Even adding in descriptions of their quirks, ticks and pieces of their background can make a character feel more real. These minor details give your readers something to relate to and help them understand the character better.
  I'm also a big fan of setting the scene. Describing the atmosphere helps the reader visualize the scene. When you're writing a scene, ask yourself a few questions.
  What's the weather like?
  Is there any noise going on (i.e. music, talking, wind, television, etc...)
  What are the characters doing?
  When you ask yourself these questions, find little ways to incorporate them into the storyline. If you want to describe the weather, say something like,
  'The cool autumn air breezes past me as I step outside to meet Carol.'
  When you want to mention any noise going on in the background, write something along the lines of,
  '"I haven't seen you in a while," Jim says over the annoyingly loud rock music.'
  As a reader, I find that when authors set scenes such as stated above, I can visualize/feel/hear the scene taking place in my head much clearer.
  Try to find subtle ways to incorporate details. Make it flow naturally with the story. Randomly stating that the character's favorite color is orange can seem a bit awkward, but saying something like, "Greg chose the orange shirt, orange being his favorite color." This way it's a part of the story line and you learn something about the character. Those who share this in common with the character can say, "Cool. Orange is my favorite color, too."
  Stay tuned this week for more writing tips and confessions and a brand new segment that will be debuting Friday!

-Miranda Atchley

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