Remember that song by the Stones, long long ago? Pretty creative, energetic, descriptive? Recall the next line: ‘Her … got soul…’
Creativity is the way to keep your soul as your own. You can quote me on that.
I was reading up on deep point of view today. My favorite explanation is here:
Writers in the Storm isn’t always my favorite writing blog, but this was just perfect. It explains very clearly what publishers (so far as I know) demand of us, if we’re writing love stories. (I don’t know about other forms of fiction, but non-fiction doesn’t have these expectations.)
Frankly, I became exasperated with Writers in the Storm when they went on a tech-is-Life jag. I’m pretty strong on keeping humans in charge. There are so many wonderful sci fi stories about humans becoming passive and lazy. I read some especially chilling ones this last year. I’m careful about using too many gadgets and devices to do my writing for me.
At any rate, I do recommend this post. It also gives credence to using fewer and more descriptive dialogue tags, even if you’re uninterested in the other stuff. I think we can all learn from this post.
Although I’ve read Julia Quinn novels and agree with other authors that JQ’s text is ‘sparse’ — I enjoy her light touch and simplicity. Also, I think her sparse prose sends us a wonderful sense of FUN.
I’m looking over my dream-journals (I’ve written my dreams down for years, first thing each morning) to make my descriptions come alive. Hemingway refused to describe his protagonists. I describe people once and that’s enough. I simply won’t shove long-winded descriptions down readers throats.
But I want to be fair so I looked over some of Julia Quinn’s books today. I decided that learning to have a light, cheerful touch is probably the answer.
Another idea is to look at your own journals/dream journals. Translating a dream into everyday English does strengthen your powers of description. You have taken an abstract thought and put it into robust, earthy English. And diaries/journals do keep us describing our emotions.
A little talk about technique that will hopefully help! Keep in touch. Julia Bates