- Series: Elements of Fiction Writing
- Paperback: 171 pages
- Publisher: Writer's Digest Books; 1st edition (July 15, 1999)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0898799082
- ISBN-13: 978-0898799088
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.5 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (55 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #315,917 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Description (Elements of Fiction Writing) 1st Edition
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
Customers who bought this item also bought
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
From the Back Cover
Description is most powerful when it's visible, aural, tactile. Make your descriptions fresh and they'll move your story forward, imbue your work with atmosphere, create that tang of feeling that editors cry for and readers crave. Monica Wood helps you squeeze the greatest flavor from the language. She segments description like an orange, separating its slices to let you sample each one.
You'll learn about:
- Detail, and how you can use description to awaken the reader's senses of touch, taste, hearing, smell and sight
- Advancing story using only relevant description--and how to edit out sluggish, reader-stopping writing
- Style, and the use of description to create a mood that matches your story's content
- Point of view --how selecting omniscient, first person or third person limited narrative influences the descriptive freedom you have
- Creating original word depictions of people, animals, places, weather and movement
Wood teaches by example, developing stories with characters in various situations, to show you how you can apply description techniques.
You'll also see samples of work by such noted writers as Mark Helprin, Anne Tyler and Raymond Carver. And you'll find the dos and don'ts, lists and descriptive alternatives to common verbs and nouns, and tips for editing your work.
About the Author
Monica Wood is the author of the novel Secret Language. Her frequently anthologised short stories have appeared in such publications as Redbook, The North American Review, Yankee, Tampa Review and Manoa. Her stories have been read on public radio, nominated for the National Magazine Award, and given special mention in the Pushcart Prize. A native of western Maine, she now lives in Portland.
Browse award-winning titles. See more
If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?
Top Customer Reviews
- explains "show, don't tell" very effectively
- teaches readers to find a balance between rules under "do" and "don't", for example she advises to do both narrative and exposition
- the quality of information progressively worsens towards the end of the book
- author often repeats herself; I find no problem with it if some insight is gained but there are moments when they are mere repetitions
If I were to summarise, the authors covers "show, don't tell", the "Scene and Narrative (much like Sequel)", viewpoints, description in dialogue, flash forwards/flashbacks, description in context, simile/metaphors, and the use of the five senses. Unfortunately though, I would rather recommend you another book, "How to Fix Your Novel" by Steve Alcorn. He covers all the topics above more briefly but just as effectively, if not more. Best of all, Steve covers novel aspects beyond description and does not repeat himself needlessly.
I've read many books on writing novels, books that pound in messages like show-don't-tell and avoid flashbacks like the plague. Stein on Writing and Self-Editing for Fiction Writers were great books for me when I was writing my first manuscript - and I still refer to them regularly - but now I want to advance my writing further.
Description is great for that. Instead of saying "Show-don't-tell," description teaches methods for creating a balance between showing and telling. While Wood doesn't recommend using flashbacks, like most other books, she provides tools to make flashbacks more seamless. I like her balanced approach, and I consider this a great book for the slightly more advanced author.
I only gave this book four stars because I didn't think that the examples she used were the epitome of great writing, but her examples always got her point across.