Tuesday, June 11, 2019

#TipfulTuesday Scenes That Propel Story



#TipfulTuesday Scene Setting Tips
(The bridge in the photo is significant for this topic...read to the end to see why)

When the story scene moves to a new location, the writer provides a brief description, transporting the reader there.

The point of today's post is to show the flaw in that statement.

Yes, each new scene should have a description. 

Brief at first. More revealing as action and dialogue quickly take over. Readers want to know if they are underwater, on a mountaintop, in an office room, a small town, etc. This is essential for storycraft.

So, what is the error in the introductory sentence to this post?

"The writer provides."

Setting the scene will look very different depending on the POV character, and as a result, sets the tone and so much more. It's true!

Say, for example, the scene is in a living room. This is the first time this living room has been in the story.

The POV character is a female detective. Her boyfriend left for Italy with another woman on a business trip this morning. He didn't say goodbye. A body is on the floor. When the detective walks into the room does she first see the body or the Italian deco? Well, that would depend on where her mind is at that moment. Is she in the job? Then the body. If she struggles with her relationship, then the deco. 

Both will be described in this scene because both are essential. The Italian deco lets readers see more than just a body and carpet. Naturally, hidden clues can only be seen if the description takes readers beyond the body. Still, readers want to know more about the crime. Who died? A child, a woman, a man with a mask and a gun in his hand, etc.?

The first descriptive sentences of a scene propel the story forward, indicating exactly where the POV character's focus is. The first also tends to go deeper for that very reason.

Therefore both answers can be correct. It simply depends on the forward momentum of this story at this time. 


 A great resource for more information is, Kathy Tyers Writing Deep Viewpoint.

Do you have questions?

Oh, and the Venetian bridge in the photo served as the last view a prisoner received of the world before guards took him or her to prison. Can you image their POV when looking out this window? Changes the way you first looked at this photo. Right?

~Mary Vee
Photo taken in Venice, by Mary Vee

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Mary Vee -Rock climbing, white-water rafting, and hiking top Mary’s list of ways to enjoy a day. She was homeless for a time, was a teacher, a missionary, and married an Air Force vet. Mary has been a finalist in several writing contests and writes for her King.
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