Character analysing and reacting to the problem
Once the problem has been introduced you have to make your character react to it. Some sort of decision has to be made.
How they react and what they decide to do will be partly a matter of character.
You also have to decide how to show them deciding. Do you simply make them act without any explanation, or do you make them sit down and think about things? Talk to a friend? Who’s point of view do you take: detached author, victim, trouble maker, someone telling the story to a friend?
Oh no, no, not the ‘little talk…!
Christina, I - well, I. . .
In the possible story sketched last week where a mother is agonising how to tell her daughter about the facts of life you could just show her making an embarrassed attempt. Here the way she talks might show her awkwardness, self-confidence, wrong assumptions, and so on. If she talked about it with a friend you could get the back-story in easily, through the friends questions). Or she could be sitting in the park alone maybe rehearsing what to say. Or be looking in a bookshop.
Using concrete imagery to express ideas
For each of the points below, write one sentence giving one example which must be ‘concrete’ – that is something you can touch, or see, or hear. Or you could describe people’s physical reactions. The examples below give just the general idea. What you have to do is bring them to life by focusing attention on the things..
If you get exactly the right detail, that saves you having to describe in detail, because from that detail the reader can imagine everything else. But more important, it gives a much strong impact.
· Julia is standing outside the cinema waiting for James. She’s getting anxious.
· Debbie stands on the red carpet of the film premier looking gorgeous.
· The party next door was very noisy
· A van was backing laboriously up their back drive
· The amount of alcohol had begun to affect her vision
· When the teacher told her off little Anne was very rebellious
· You could see that Linda had go off into one of her dreams