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Creative Writing Exercises For Dummies by Maggie Hamand

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Part III

Painting the Picture with Description

Top five ways to help you describe the world of your story

  • Create a sense of place by mapping out the world of your story in detail, so you know where all the major locations fit in and where your characters live, work and play.
  • Use all the senses to hook your reader in and make him experience the world as vividly and directly as possible. Remember to use colour, sound and music, smell and taste.
  • Describe your characters in action, not just statically. Remember to use strong verbs and keep the characters – and the story – moving.
  • Use description to create suspense by weaving it into the action. Use the weather to reflect and evoke the characters’ moods and build up tension, and create a sense of the uncanny.
  • Use metaphors and similes to help create vivid images. The skilful use of symbols will add a layer of depth to your story, and don’t neglect to use poetic devices such as paradox, personification and alliteration.

webextras.eps Check out www.dummies.com/extras/creativewritingexercises for an article on describing things afresh.

In this part …

  • Find out how to set your story in a concrete reality – at a certain time in a specific place, whether that is past, present or future, at home or abroad.
  • Grow your skills to describe the world that your characters inhabit, so that readers can visualise the scenes as they unfold, experience the action ...

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