Saturday, June 21, 2008

Writing tip of the day: Chronology

Write the events within each scene in chronological order. Think of the string of events in each scene as if they were letters in the alphabet. You wouldn’t normally recite the alphabet out of order, would you? For example, don’t write, “I went to Bob’s house, but first I changed clothes. We watched television after we fixed drinks.” Reading those four sentences is like reciting the alphabet B-A-D-C. Instead, write, “I changed clothes and went to Bob’s house. After we fixed drinks, we watched television.”

Use flashbacks sparingly and intentionally. If you write a flashback, make it clear through your transition that the scene takes place at a time before the beginning of your story. Write the events that happen during the flashback scene in chronological order (see above). Make it clear through your transition when the flashback has ended.

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