I always hear people say "show, don't tell." I find this works a lot of the time, but sometimes I feel like telling is a better option. I feel like it is quicker, and let's the audience paint their own picture. Take for instance the opening line of the first harry potter, in which Rowling states that the dursley's were "perfectly normal in every way." Now, I know a lot of people on here will say "You're using JK Rowling as your example? Pleease.." and that's fair enough, but look at the opening of Poe's Tell-tale Heart: "TRUE! nervous, very, very dreadfully nervous I had been and am" That is telling, not showing -- and there's no denying that Poe is a literary great. And for his opening gambit he chose to tell. My general thoughts are that showing are good when you want to slow the story down and involve the reader in the details, but that too much of it can really make the story drag. In the Poe example, we get a sense of the narrator in one quick sentence, and we can fill in the gaps on our own. That's how I generally feel on the subject at least. How about you guys? Do you ALWAYS try to show over tell? Or when do you choose to do each?