Less narration mo re dialogue. Look for adverbs and adjectives and change the words to describe how the character is feeling. Don’t say the MC (main character) is happy. Say “she turned her head to suppress the giddy smile that was breaking out on her face.” I’ve been thinking of gestures; pursed lips, clenched teeth, flared nostrils, etc. to use to express different emotions to take my writing to a deeper level. Words are key, a single word, the right word, can pull it all in like a piano key strike. Explosions of emote from word choice. ex. I like the word seared. It expresses a specific impression without all the words – heat, hot, burning, sealed, sizzled,
In a review I received the comment was that my entire first chapter was a narration. I have developed a thicker skin and try to put the critique to good use. I haven’t taken the axe to my story yet. I’m working it out in my mind first. I am; however, applying it to all my stories.
I’m waiting to hear from several of the contests I entered many of my stories to, I should hear from several in the next month. Something has to give.
Maria stopped in the vast hallway outside her father’s chamber. She could hear angry voices. This alone wouldn’t have caused her to despair, for they often argued, but in this conversation she distinctly heard her own name. In the daylight the hall was filled with sun, and the richness of the vermilion color of the walls enhanced the high anxiety she was feeling. As she moved closer to the massive doorway she felt conspicuous, yet she would have no recourse – she was eavesdropping.
Right away I think I can do something with the angry voices. This; however, is the first line of my story, do I want dialogue so soon? The story is about five daughters of the Tsar. Maria is the MC but there are subplots and my idea was to probe the minds of five different people dealt with the seclusion. One of the characters is a well documented historical figure, another plays an important part in the life of the Tsar, the rest are imagined, for they died very young. My stories are well researched, interesting, and have great potential. But, it falls flat as far as entertaining the reader. I have a lot to learn and need a little luck to find the right agent and publisher.
I have to keep writing, a little bit every day, even when I’m struggling — like today. I was on Twitter and got a bit of encouragement in a quote. I’ve reading as well. A lot. Not being the best sentence structure aficionado I’m not sure how much style plays into the basic rules of grammar. There is a lot of information on the subject out there, it’s a matter of retaining it where it counts.