1. nburwell
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    nburwell Senior Member

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    Show and Tell

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by nburwell, Apr 3, 2008.

    In some of my reviews on the board, I have been telling writers to "Show not tell" While this rule is important, I want to stress that your goal is to bring the writer into the story and to envelope them in it. This doesn't always mean that you have to dramatically describe every instance. This can sometimes drag the flow and make the story too slow.

    I found a great article on showing and telling at Wikipedia that I wanted to share:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Show,_don't_tell

    I hope that some of you can find use out of this.

    Hugs,
    Natalie
     
  2. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Very often, what I see is writers showing AND telling, something like:
    In that case, it's completely unnecessary to begin with "Bart was furious," and even the adverb "angrily" is superfluous. Let the actions speak for themselves. If instead presented with:
    what reader would fail to conclude that Bart was furious?

    Of course, you could make it shorter by saying:
    But that doesn't illustrate his ire anywhere near as well as the second example.
    As the Wiki article points out, telling has its place also. The key thing to remeber is that telling won't have the impact that showing has. Telling may be preferable if you wish to de-emphasize something, just to say it and move on:
     
  3. Oasis Writer
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    Oasis Writer Contributing Member Contributor

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    Very interesting artical. I'll be looking over this more often. :)
     
  4. InPieces
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    InPieces Senior Member

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    Hmmm, interesting article. Glad i stumbled upon it, sometimes i got confused about this concept, but now i realize that it really did make sense all along :)
     
  5. soujiroseta
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    soujiroseta Senior Member Contributor

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    thank you for this article. you just gave me bragging rights:)
     
  6. EagleSpirit
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    EagleSpirit New Member

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    Very nice article... I really enjoyed the points made, and this has helped me to understand another part of writing that my naive self was oblivious to... Thanks again for sharing,

    Eagle Spirit.
     
  7. Torana
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    Torana Contributing Member Contributor

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    not a bad article at all and Cogito good to see you adding your opinions to this. :)
     

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