Showing posts from May, 2011

Repetition - Different Types and Meanings

There are different types of repetition that writers use within their narrative, description and dialogue. Each form has its own unique effectiveness that is sometimes so subtle that the effect goes largely unnoticed by the reader. The way we string certain words together within a sentence gives the reader different patterns but also gives us different effects. Rhetoric expression is a way of stressing the meaning of certain words and sentences, most often used in speeches, but just as effective nestling within your masterpiece. There are hundreds of literary terms, too many to go through all of them, however, I’ve listed the most commonly used literary uses of repetition/figures of speech that are useful within creative fiction. Anadiplosis This term, from Greek, meaning ‘doubling’, refers to when we repeat the last word of a sentence and then use it again to begin the next. Its purpose is to give a sense of rhythm to the writing, to make it flow seamlessly, for instance: “ M

Repetition - How to Use it Effectively

Repetition isn’t something a writer will normally think about, particularly if one thinks about schools days of being told that repetition is a no-no.   In creative writing, however, there is good repetition and bad repetition.   Repetition can and does work. The above opening paragraph uses repetition effectively.   The actual word 'repetition' occurs five times, but it’s not overpowering within the text.   It is there to reinforce the message and provide and subtle way of denotative resonance.   This is an example of good repetition. Bad repetition, on the other hand, occurs when the same descriptive words appear in the same sentence or paragraph several times without offering denotation or structure, for instance:   He fumbled for the keys in the dark, finally managed to open the door.   He shuffled through the hallway, switched on the lights, and in his drunken haze, fumbled with his coat buttons... This basic illustration shows how easy it is to make repetition

Description - too much or too little?

This is the kind of thing that will confuse any writer – how can you tell if you have enough description, or too little, especially when you are confronted with conflicting advice on what constitutes enough description. Many writers believe that there shouldn’t be great chunks of description in your narrative, because this tends to bore the reader.   Some say you don’t need to go into huge detail about your characters or setting– again resulting in a block of text – because the idea is to keep the reader engaged and interested.   They don’t want to read lots of description. This trend of using little description to ensure more action, is flawed - it’s designed for writers who can’t be bothered to invest the time to enrich their stories, nor invest in their readers, and it benefits the readers because they don’t have to use too much brain power reading large chunks of description, when all they want is action and dialogue.   Some of those who write in the thrillers/action genr

Description and why it's important

Description is one of the three key elements in fiction, along with narrative and dialogue, which brings your story to life.   It’s the lifeblood of your role as storyteller.   It means a writer must involve the reader at every level, and he or she can do that through the medium of description.   Description creates a vivid picture for the reader, it allows them to open a gateway to your story and imagine themselves within your fictional world. Of course, that doesn’t mean you have to go into detail about everything for every scene .   It simply means that you have to be prudent in knowing when it’s required and why. You as a writer can elicit emotions within your reader, you create tension and atmosphere, and you create a sense of immediacy – a sense of being right there with the character.   Great description helps the reader to build a fully formed picture in their mind’s eye; to understand what your character is going through and how the character sees his or her world.