Reply To: Student: Kendra Frost Homework Thread

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Linnea Sinclair

(I agree with some of the comments that I’d like to see how the MC feels about that big, imposing building. In Skyrim, one of the NPC’s remarks on how the big, stone, Imperial walls used to lend a feeling of safety, with the implication that now they definitely don’t, and I always loved that detail of how his perspective changed over time.)

This is a lovely point. In a way, it’s part of mirroring something found in the opening with some flip of that later. That’s why I harp on (and all the writing pundits harp on) “anything you describe in detail, the reader will remember.” You have to work (to write) to that fact. Need them to remember the decrepit condition of the entry keypad or the sounds the car engine makes when going uphill? Then describe it and have the MC focus on it. But DON’T give heavy attention to the keypad if it’s just setting/description so you can show off your command of the language. Because then the reader will get the to final page and go, WTF? What about that decrepit keypad?


I’d say if the boots are a needed detail that early in the story, show us what they look like. Rough and beat up? Probably a real rider. Clean and neat, probably not. Bejeweled and bright pink? Definitely a clubber or dancing shoes.

I’ve always wanted pink cowboy boots… and an eyelet lace skirt made out of old tablecloths or such. I was in Columbus OH at art/junk-tiques fair a few years back and one gal was decked out so, and I loved the look. Of course, she was twenty-something. , I’m sixty-mumble mumble…

Yes, we judge people (and characters) by what they wear. It’s useful characterization tool (BTW I’d totally forgotten I’m teaching my characterization class next month–yikes!). If you’re going to describe clothing, don’t waste the words. (Genre-specific, of course. Every Regency or Victorian romance oozes clothing descriptions.)

The “missing” details are mostly about the MC. Yes it’s in third person, but we don’t get thoughts, reactions, or much of the MC’s opinion. That makes it kind of hard to relate until the scene with her father, and even then it seems kind of distant, like we’re viewing from the outside instead of riding along.

Good call. (And Lordy, I hate my husband’s keyboard! Aargh!) Gut reactions/internal thoughts are a good way to lead the reader into the character. We all have them and, because we do, we know how unfiltered and automatic they are, and how TRUE they often are.

I especially love this line: “she jabbed the button like a hungry pileated woodpecker in search of a tree ant.” Great visual, and it also shows her irritation with being “late”

Nice voice. Definitely.


//Interstellar Adventure Infused with Romance//


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