Well, we've had a few fics submitted and reviewed and all in all, I think things have gone fairly well!
Thanks to our authors and all the reviewers who took time to give feedback.
I really hope you guys will consider submitting something as you work on fics (you are working on fics, right?). And PLEASE consider pimping us to your friends.
Okay, now to the business of the day: We had a poll a few weeks back (remember that?). There seemed to be some interest in discussing writing as well as having some specific writing challenges. So, I thought we would use one to lead us to the other!
So, please *please* join me in discussing the following:
What type of scene is the most difficult for you to write and why? (emphasis on the why) And please feel free to include examples (good or bad) from your own writing if you wish!
Hmm, well, for the moment I'm going to skip the part where my smut muse has decided to up and leave…and I'll say that action scenes are the most difficult for me.
I usually have a clear idea of what I want to happen in an action scene (I can kind of see it in my head), but how to get that on the page in a form that is even remotely coherent and doesn't use the same boring descriptions over and over is really hard! I seem to end up confusing the reader as to who is doing what, and I seem to get bogged down in the details. One fist punch here, then there's movement and Jayne (it's usually Jayne :) is throwing some guy here, and then he's drawing a gun and firing and…
Yeah. It's why my action scenes are short and my action fics are fairly rare. Here's one of the few brief examples of action that I've written: It was all Jayne said before pushing back his chair to throw a punch at the nearest man moving toward the captain and Zoe. Book was on his feet in an instant, moving to usher the young women behind the bar for safety. He could see the captain taking pleasure in throwing a man across a table, while Zoe kneed another in a particularly sensitive area. Jayne, of course, was now surrounded by three men and thoroughly enjoying himself.
“Preacher, look out behind you!” Jayne called out, while punching one of his attackers in the face.
Book didn’t question his advice. He whirled to see a man with a whiskey bottle raised to strike him. One quick snap to the throat and the man was doubled over gasping for breath. Saying a prayer of forgiveness under his breath, he resisted the urge to help the man. It didn’t take much to resist though, as he was soon ducking to avoid a chair that was thrown across the room.
I think it's one of my better one's because I didn't let it go on long and I tried to keep the details to a minimum, but it still ain't great. (Feel free to critique it if you wanna. No pressure though).
Lately, I've been thinking that writing action is a bit like writing a sex scene. How to describe body parts moving around without getting mechanical about it and still conveying the emotion. I mean really, they're exactly alike! (Jayne would not be at all surprised to hear that.)
And now I'm going to point you to a reference wherein you'll see that I just plagiarized that idea from someone else. I didn't mean to. *head/desk* But the reference is very worth checking out and was provided to me by the lovely lvs2read
. It is actually The formula for writing sex scenes
and it's worth a read (although it does contain slash, so there's your warning). I like the ideas she presents though on how to use a few basic structures to get the desired response; namely the Action Formula ("The action formula can be broken down into three parts: a) the action/context ratio, b) show, don't tell, and c) negative/positive build.") The one idea I think I will definitely use when I next try an action scene is for every action a character performs, I should include two descriptive statements to evoke the feeling/emotion of the scene/character. Yeah. That sounds good.
So, that's what's hard for me. Let's hear what type of scene is difficult for you and maybe we can structure some challenges around that, 'kay?Oh, and feel free to comment on anything I've just said.