Catch the wind

Catch the wind

Saturday, October 09, 2010

...detail stuff

detail is real important in writing. its that little stuff that could make what you write lots more alive. if you get some detail into your writing the readers not gonna be bored. mostly it doesnt just pop out at you and you gotta do some thinking on when it could be needed and how much you could want to use. too much is just as bad as not enough.
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when you start thinking about details you gotta learn to look around and see stuff a different way. heres what i mean. just think about brushing your teeth. thats easy. but if you think about those details in brushing your teeth you could be real surprised at how much of them there are. what color is my toothbrush? does it have hard soft or medium bristles. what kind of toothpaste am i using? is it in a tube or one of those squeeze bottles? what color is the tube or bottle? do i use a little squeeze or a big glop? hot or cold water? whats the sink look like and the handles and spout? WOW! thats sure a lot of detail stuff just for brushing your teeth and theres probably lots more. its real important for your story that you think about that stuff cause details could give your story lots more color and meaning for the reader.
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heres something real important. you just gotta be real careful not to do too much detail cause that could be a bore for the reader too. i read a story one time that did a lot of describing in every chapter of how everything at the setting looked in zillions of little details. after a couple times it got soooo boring and got me away from what the story was about. ugh! that story was pretty good and i wanted to get to know how it ended so every time i got to a long bunch of details i just skipped past them and looked for more of the story. i gotta be honest and say if the story wasnt so good i would have just stopped reading it and for sure i wouldnt give it to someone else to read. thats pretty sad cause the writer did really good writing but did just way too much details on one thing. so you gotta be sure those details are something that could help the story but still let it keep moving.
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now i hope you could know more about how its important to put details in your writing and how its a really good thing when you get them just right.
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do you think about details and use them just enough so your story could be more alive?
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…hugs from lenny

46 comments:

  1. Hi Lenny .. that's a great post .. full of details and yet you didn't tell me the colour of your toothbrush!

    I love putting in little details .. that will stimulate the reader .. I try and make my posts fun, yet informative and certainly not dry nor boring ... at least that's my intention!!

    Have a wonderful week .. and happy learning and reading stories .. Hilary

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  2. Good afternoon, Lenny. I enjoyed reading your post about detail stuff. Cute picture of Eyore.

    I hope you have a wonderful, smile filled week! : ) : ) : ) : ) : ) : ) : )

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  3. details are important but i only like to add the important ones. sometimes when people add too many details i get bored and skip them anyways so i only write what i would read.

    hugs back.

    clarissa

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  4. Wonderful advice, Lenny! I find that the best details are the vivid, unusual, or funny ones. They hold your reader's interest. Therefore, to know that you're embarrassed to be using an Agent Oso toothbrush (but it's the only one you can find) and the toothpaste is too minty (because your sister bought it)and you brush every tooth 20 times (because the health teacher scared you with that grotty picture of rotten teeth) ... those are the details that will entertain your reader!

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  5. Great post! I'm afraid I'm really detailed when I write, but hopefully not so much that people wouldn't want to read further. You're right that it's all about balance. I agree with the comment above that I would love to learn more about your toothbrush! :-) Mine is white and orange and the bristles are pretty small ;-)

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  6. Like you I get bored with too many details. So with my own writing I tend to err on the other side and not put enough in! Then I have to go back and add some for the readers.

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  7. another fine point you make my man. Normally I don't worry to much about the details and choose to let the reader's imagination supply most of those, but you have given me something to think about and I am sure tonight when I brush my teeth before bed, I will be paying extra attention to the details.

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  8. Great post, Lenny. You're so right about how much details matter.

    Thank you for checking out my blog and entering my contest.

    beth-project52.blogspot.com

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  9. Often when I'm working on a first draft I'm just trying to get the basic info down. I add a lot more detail when I go back and edit.

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  10. Wonderful post, Lenny! Details are really important. You talked about two really important things...having enough and not having too many. You are right if there are too many details it might seem like a list factsand that is boring. I've put books down for that reason before.

    I've noticed since I started writing that I notice the details in life more than I did before. Like today I noticed that the temperature changes when we drive the Harely past a group of trees or down a dip in the road. I noticed that the racoons are getting very fat right now...they're eating a lot of corn because the farmers are harvesting. The air is full of dust because of the combines...I've noticed it's only NINE DAYS until you turn 11!

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  11. I so agree Lenny, there is a fine line between too much and not enough. As writer's we're told often enough to show and not tell, or to trust the reader's imagination. As a reader, it's also true that too much makes you skip pages, I'm ashamed to say I've done this recently, despite loving the author and the story! have a great one Lenny!

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  12. I have problems adding detail. I always have to go back and add it in later. But you're right, too many details really slow it down.

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  13. It's best to only include the important details. Great post, Lenny!

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  14. Right on the money Lenny! Details are key, descriptions bring the world alive, as long as you don't go overboard.

    J.K. Rowling had a ton of detail and was very descriptive, I thoroughly enjoyed all of the Harry Potter books and devour them before each movie is about to be released! That being said she broke a rule, most authors could not get away with this but because there was something so brilliant about her story it worked!!!

    Glad you are enjoying the books I sent you!!! I see you're countdown is getting smaller and smaller to the big day :)

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  15. Great post Lenny.

    You are right, details are important.
    I read an awesome tip from a writer that said the more intense the scene, the more details you add. :)

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  16. This is such a brilliant post, Lenny! And you're right - we have to make sure we have enough detail without hitting detail overload. I usually don't put in enough the first time I write a story, and then I have to go back and add more when I revise.

    You might enjoy reading this post:

    http://shannonkodonnell.blogspot.com/2010/02/runaway-tree.html

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  17. De Tail - too funny, Lenny!

    When I first wrote, I put in too much detail. Then I learned the only detail I needed was to ground the scene. If the characters floated in midair, then there wasn't enough information! And while I don't need to provide every hand gesture or face my characters make, I have to give some. I've learned to put the detail in the action.

    Thanks for your take on detail. I never want to have someone put my book down because he's bored.

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  18. great post! I have a problem with balancing too much vs too little detail. I'm always working on it!

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  19. Yes! Details are SOSOSOSO important for sure! They help you get to know more about the person/situation.etc.
    Great post!

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  20. I read just like you! I skim all those sunset descriptions. Which means I'm not very good at including them in my own work. I always have to go back and add them in later.

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  21. This is a wonderful post with some good advice, Lenny! Thank you for visiting my blog and your nice comments, and I look forward to reading more from you. Your picture of Eeyore is great!

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  22. Hey Lenny,
    What a lot of good advice you have shared with us. Of course, detail is very important. Too much detail could get quite boring and not leave enough to the reader's imagination.
    Now then, speaking of 'toothpaste', I can't stand it when someone squeezes the tube from the top lol
    Have a really nice week, Lenny.
    See ya later eh! Hugs and smiles from Gary :-)

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  23. De tail! He he!

    Happy Almost Birthday Lenny...T-minus 7 days! WooHoo. :)

    Vivid, unique details are indeed important. But I agree, too many and...*Zzzzz* snooze time. If I find myself skimming more than once or twice in the first 2 chapters, I stop and donate it to the library or give it away.

    As always, a wonderful post. :)
    Love,
    Lola

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  24. I have to admit, I love details and I include a lot in my story. Details are what makes it unique and flavorful. But I try not to have an OVER-abundance. Because you're very right, Lenny, too many can get boring and take you away from the main story. :)

    ~Hugs from Amanda.

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  25. What a very smart post. I agree with you completely. Sometimes there's such as thing as too much of a good thing, right?

    Getting excited about your birthday?

    PS: Mentioning your wonderfully interllectual compatrison between Water and Table on my blog today ;o)

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  26. Great thoughts, Lenny! I don't get enough details in until I've done a few drafts. In the first draft, I'm still just trying to feel out the story. Then from there I nuance it more.

    Thanks for sharing--you've got this down, guy! :o)

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  27. Thanks for the reminder Lenny! Some writers are afraid of details in case their writing is boring. Myself, I like good description of details..:)

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  28. what a great post Lenny! I usually get to details on the beginning and then chop whats not usefull and leave whats interesting =D
    Again, superb post!

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  29. You've got it Lenny - the trick is keeping it balanced. Sometimes I put too much detail in, and other times I'm soaring along in the story and forget that a key detail in just the right spot will make it POP!

    Thanks for the great reminder! :)

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  30. Great information about details in writing! I think often times, people forget this part, thinking that readers will skip over it, but I find books without much detail to be really boring!

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  31. Great post! I'm bad for not adding enough detail and having crit partners mention 'a detail or two might be nice here...' But I'm also with you on the 'too many' problem. Good reminder.

    First time here ~waves~ I've seen you in the comments of a number of blogs we both visit, so I thought I'd come check you out. Glad I did! :)

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  32. Thanks for visiting my blog and your comment about the "raccows," Lenny!

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  33. Great post! As a photographer, I spend a lot of time studying the details in everything. The colors. The lighting. The juxtapositions. Despite this, though, I'm lean on the details when it comes to writing. Of course, some people think I'm too lean. Others don't think I'm lean enough. Can't please everyone, I guess. ;)

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  34. I know I've commented, but I left you an award at my blog if you want it. :D

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  35. Wow, Lenny, I am imperssed! Your post hits the nail on the head on how to handle details in a story! I completely agree with you that too much of it is as bad as too little! I know, because I have to keep watching so I don't do that in my manuscript! :-)

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  36. You're so right - details are so important. But you're also right about not overdoing it, I actually think for me, as a reader, that's even worse. Great post, Lenny!

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  37. Finding the right balance can be very difficult. You are so very right! Great post!

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  38. I really am a sucker for the details. I love them so much when I read, but I probably put in way too much when I write. It's tough to find a balance.

    Thanks Lenny!

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  39. Hi Lenny! Saw your comment on Creepy Query Girl's site - thanks!

    And looks like you have a big day tomorrow - happy birthday!

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  40. Thanks for sharing what you learn about writing! Great descriptions are like the chocolate chips in a cookie, don't you think? Just plain boring without them!

    ((hugs)) Nicole

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  41. Details are definitely what makes some stories into STORIES while others just remain words on the page. You know?

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  42. Great post, Lenny! You should be very proud of how much you know about writing at such a young age! Keep at it!

    Angela @ The Bookshelf Muse

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  43. Happy Birthday Lenny! I hope it's great! You are super cool and I love your blog!!!!!!

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  44. I skip some of those details too LOL. AND HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! Have a great one and keep reading and writing : )

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  45. Great post on detail. I love the picture. I try to put in just enough but not too much. sort of like salt on fries. Too much ruins them, while not enough just isn't good, lol.

    Have a great day,
    Cher

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  46. You make a lot of very good points about the inportance of detail in writing. Your observation on not putting in too much detail was also very wise. I'm so impressed with all that you know about writing, Lenny.

    Big hug,
    Jai

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whatever wonderful, warm, witty and wise words you manage to come up with!