53

Add spices and Mix: I think the problem is you are thinking of your writing as infodump. Not all infodump is always bad, but no one really likes it. What you should do, however, is figure out what the scene adds to the story and integrate the details into a cohesive whole. The content that makes it essential should be visible in the paragraph, and convey the ...


19

Compare your paragraph to He went and bought a bread and yoghurt for the homeless guy. This is omitting a little bit of information compared to your paragraph: I don't specify that the grocery store is located back where the protagonist came from, and nearby. This may vary from place to place, but I'd expect a grocery store to be nearby in an urban setting ...


14

The reader must understand what happened, which is why I mentioned every action the character made I want to question this, because I think it's a big driver of bad writing. Why are the actions important? Are they interesting actions? No. Do they explore the character? Well, not the way you've written them. DWKraus has explored how you can address those, ...


13

Those who build worlds inevitably want to show off their skills. The trick is not to be boring. One approach that I have tried to use is as follows: Work out the details of the world building. Write it up separately. Write a bare-bones story that depends upon that world building but does not include any of the world building. For each action and interaction,...


7

If it's a drudge to write it, it is a drudge to read it. I (as a reader) don't want to read this: He turned around and started walking to the nearby store. He bought a bread and a yoghurt. Then he came back and gave the groceries to the homeless guy. That is a drudge to read. It tells me unneeded details of mundane things - and honestly, it leaves out ...


4

A Few Thoughts: I'm far from an expert, but here are a few things that come to mind. I struggle with short stories because I go slow, integrating facts in little dribbles throughout the story. But all this info must come in an organic, naturally-feeling way. This is far from exhaustive, and each done well is clever, done poorly is awful (and this is, ...


4

Practice! This can be hard to do in the throes of writing, so it may be wise to do writing exercises. Perhaps a paragraph in which you never use the same structure twice. Or perhaps seeing how many different ways you can rewrite a sentence. (And if they sound stupid, they are just an exercise -- no one will see them.) I climbed up the arm into the ...


3

So sentence structure is the basic format sentences should take (have you ever in grammar courses graphed a sentence?) and informs how to parse the language. Typically, in English, Sentences follow a [subject clause][verb clause][predicate clause], though imperative (ordering) sentences can have an implied "You" as the subject and no predicate. ...


2

There are two sides of writing. First, is the glorious act of creation, thinking up plots, fleshing out characters, and building worlds. Then there is the mundane, blue-color work of making all of those dreams make some kind of sense (also known as revisions). I think that you are asking about the second and less glamorous part of the job. I will tell you ...


2

Skip[p]ing any of the actions may confuse reader as it would sound as hero conjured something out of nowhere. The reader can probably guess where the groceries came from, but if you want to make it more explicit, discussing things that happened in the past for which the focus is how they relate to the current situation is what perfect tenses are for: He ...


2

He turned around and started walking to the nearby store. He bought a bread and a yoghurt. Then he came back and gave the groceries to the homeless guy. That's a great act of kindness, but why did he do it? Adding the "why" can make a large difference between "drudge" and "character building". Clark noticed Jessie up ahead, ...


2

Readers (as opposed to obsessive fans!) only want to know as much about the world as they absolutely need in order to understand the story --typically, and most naturally, the same things the characters absolutely need to know at any given time. A lot of times this means that only a tiny portion of the worldbuilding you've done makes in into the book (and ...


2

Since you brought it up, Star Wars is one of the most massive EU's ever and approaches the caliber of an entire mythology when compared to most ancient myths. But it started small. Had people not swarmed theaters to see A New Hope (or as it was known on it's opening day Star Wars), it still competently told the story to the extent that you could watch ...


1

The fact that you're worrying about this question is a clear sign that you're doing well; many students just state blankly. The trick here is to dig a bit into the assumptions. So, if someone says: "I should not go to school because I am sick." Then ask yourself: why is being sick a reason not to go to school? A bunch of rationalizations might ...


1

Here's how I work with worldbuilding (and backstory): Use as little backstory and worldbuilding information as you can get away with Let the story tell you when information is needed Include information implicitly, hidden in plain sight, as a tone or air in the scenes rather than explicitly "on the reader's nose" Save the guide books and other ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible