Quick Link: A Look at Masterful Character Description Part 2

Quick links, bringing you great articles on writing from all over the web.

I am sick and I am trying really hard to find the right way to tell you that at Live Write Thrive, C.S. Latkin has written a really good post on dealing with character description. It is more of the show don’t tell, but the way Latkin puts it is quite powerful. Worth your time.

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A Look at Masterful Character Description Part 2

by C.S. Latkin

Let me begin this week’s post, a continuation of looking at masterful character description, by lifting this paragraph from last week’s post:

Description is more than what the eye sees. It involves making judgments, coming to conclusions, forming impressions. Since our descriptions must be filtered through our POV character’s mind and heart, instead of thinking of description as a laundry list of items (hair color, eye color, shoe brand), they should reveal just as much, if not more, about our POV character as the person (or place or animal or food—anything) being described.

I repeat this to be emphatic about the importance of taking the time to both know your characters thoroughly as well utilizing description powerfully and deliberately.

In other words, don’t waste space or your reader’s precious time by writing ineffective description. Make it count. Make it evocative. Make it fresh and revealing.

I’ve been pulling description from James Lee Burke’s novels, for he is a masterful wordsmith. I am continually awed by his descriptions and the way he always seems to sprinkle in these bits at the right times, creating an air of reflection and pausing at appropriate moments.

Read the full post on Live Write Thrive!

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