Friday, 25 February 2011


I'm editing at the moment and for a long time it was fine. Then I got to chapter ten. The description I discovered here wasn't as much patchy as bald. There was a light dusting of adjectives. But that was it. The 'world' I'd created seemed mundane.

Mundane wasn't quite the effect I was aiming for when I planned my post-apocalyptic sci-fi thriller. It wasn't helped by the plot problems that developed at about this time, leaving the action moribund. Again, not the effect I'd sketched out in my mind when I was wondering whether I'd allow Stephen Spielberg to direct the motion picture. Motion and moribund being pretty much on the opposite ends of the action spectrum.

The first thing I had to do was made my plot move. So I added some cannibals. Once the human flesh-munching tribe hove into view, my main characters start moving at speed. To keep the momentum going, I had a second set of cannibals attack the first set of cannibals. Then I described it.

A spear sped out, then another and a hail of arrows. One of the men was hit and crawled behind the hut, dripping blood as he staggered away. The invaders held men down thrashing, bleeding. Then they slashed them across the throat. Red gushed onto the earth. Frank could taste the iron spattered in the air.
It's disgusting, but least it's not mundane.

Read more about Improving Description...

No comments:

Post a Comment