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Friday, July 5, 2013

How Paying Attention To Small Things Can Jazz Up Your Story


Thanks to VikLit for this great Idea


JULIE MUSIL posted something on her blog the other day about taking a notebook to her son's football camp and noting details. She wrote about the location, the artificial turf, the weather and Powerade stations where players could get a quick hydrating drink.

She wrote about the people around her--what they wore, their haircuts, the way their moms and dad watched or read or talked on their cell phones.

Small details about sights and sounds and activities.

Why?

There's nothing like being able to recreate a real life scene in your fictional one, and Julie's details are exactly what will help do that.

So today, while you're celebrating small things, take a notebook along with you and write down some of them. When you're in the middle of a scene, read those details and see which ones will Jazz Up your story and bring it to life.

Hope you'll stop by some other blogger sites and see what they're celebrating this week.

29 comments:

  1. Hi Lee .. happy notings .. and I keep learning so many ways of adding to one's writing -

    Small things mean so much in life in so many ways .. and are so important too .. cheers Hilary

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  2. I read Julie's post. She'd really noted some incredible details. It's a very good suggestion, Lee.

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  3. Dostoyevski, the best writer ever, went everywhere with a notepad in his pocket :) He even watched strangers in the street and noted down their features, little quirks, behaviour...

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  4. Brilliant advice. It's those little details that make a story more realistic.

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  5. Julie's awesome and her tips are always great! I need to get braver about taking notes in public! :)

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  6. Such a great idea--this is exactly how to get those small sensory details into a story that make it feel incredibly authentic. :)

    Angela

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  7. Couldn't agree more. It's always those little details that draw me into a story. :)

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  8. Thanks so much for the mention, Lee! And for the kind words. I keep a ratty old notebook in my purse, which comes in handy so often. And stacks of notebook paper around the house, for jotting down ideas when they strike!!

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    1. You inspired today's post, Julie! I really appreciated your suggestion the other day.

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  9. As long as no one thinks you are spying on them!

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  10. That's a wonderful tip. I will experiment next time I leave the cave.

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  11. That's a fantastic idea. I do that sometimes when struck by something... or if I see a detail, ie, tired hair, I'll jot it down when I get home. I write in a notebook when away from home, but jotting down details would be a good use for it, too.

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  12. That is such a great idea. For a creative writing class once, I had to write down a conversation verbatim - yes eaves dropping - and it was a great exercise. I'll need to start doing that. I definitely have enough note pads.

    And thanks for dropping by my website. I got my first contact message. :) Writer’s Mark

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  13. I love the idea of going somewhere and writing down all the details you notice.

    Great post!

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  14. I've always loved Julie's posts where she soaks in an environment. She is an inspiration. Great suggestion. Yay, an excuse to go to the office supply store for a cool notebook.

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  15. Wonderful suggestion from Julie

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  16. That's an excellent idea. I know Cynthia Lord has done something similar for certain scenes. Nothing like living it to capture the senses!

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  17. Ever since I started taking photos to build up my photo library for blog posts I notice so many small things that I normally never paid attention to. All those little details definitely help make our scenes come alive. Have a wonderful weekend, Lee!

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  18. What a great piece of advice, and it's so true, small details really help bring scenes alive. Thanks for sharing.

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  19. I love details that make a scene pop out.

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  20. I carry my notebook with me, but more to scribble down an idea of a funny dialogue.... I've never thought to do it like Julie did. Great advice! Definitely going to try this. :)

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  21. Notebook and pen!! It's a great combination!! Yay for Julie! Take care
    x

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  22. Loved this, awesome tip!
    I have a collection of notebooks and I carry one with me at all times to write down ideas, but this is a perfect use for descriptions and for capturing reality. ;)

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  23. I love this idea. I try to do it now and then, and it helps me start noticing details, and visualizing them before I write.
    Thanks for the reminder!

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  24. A very good tip, C.Lee.

    It helps us keep focussed too,

    All the best!

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  25. I used to do the same when I was a beat reporter - especially when the story was not *that* exciting to many readers.

    Often I would find enough material to make the "backstory" more interesting than the real reason for the interview:)

    PS... *Love* the new look... very groovy :)

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  26. What an excellent idea! Thanks for sharing. :)
    ~Stephanie

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