Talking is something that's easy. The thing is, books written in the same type voice as we actually talk with, are an easy read. Try some of this fiction writing techniques the next time you set down at the keyboard. It will make a difference in your writing!
Memoir How To | Fiction Writing Tips
This memoir how to explains using the fiction writing tip of "Showing" to engage your reader. Facts are necessary in memoir but the packaging decides if it's worth reading.
Use Fiction Writing Tips but Keep it Real!
It's easy to tell a story about yourself at a party, reunion or get together among friends. You have the ability to use gestures, facial expressions, body language and impersonate voices.
In writing, we don't have that luxury. Your story has to be told in a way that engages your reader -- makes them want to know more -- all by using only words on a page. Bringing a story to life for your reader is the goal for authors.
Memoirist do this by using fiction writing tips and techniques. That is not to say that the truth of the event, time period or people you write about is skewed -- "memoir" means it is a true story. If it's not a true story, it's fiction... period.
Fiction Writing Tips for Memoir Writers
Showing and Telling
A memoir takes a reader on a journey into the past -- your past. No one is better suited to tell or write about your life than you. But, you have to tell it in a way that makes readers want to read more. You know the story but your readers don't. You should write it in a way that allows the reader to experience your story firsthand instead of through narrative telling. Using actions, dialog, thoughts, senses and overall dramatization makes it more real for the reader.
Showing and Telling -- Memoir is a genre that needs both showing and telling from the author. Because it is a story from your life, there will be times you need to "tell" information instead of show. But, "showing" is a technique that is absolutely necessary to keep a reader involved. It paints a picture (cliche, I know, but fitting).
"Showing" correctly means that you understand your reader is smart. With some descriptive language from you, they interpret "Johnny is short" without you outright saying "Johnny is short".
Close your eyes. See the scene play out in your mind. Write the details and descriptions that will create a "mind movie" for your reader.
Showing & Telling
from Writers Digest Books
|Showing & Telling: Learn How to Show & When to Tell for P...|
Writers Digest Books
Examples of Showing and Telling
in your writing
Using the showing technique tells your reader you respect them -- that you don't have to hit them over the head with a bold, telling sentence. They will know through the words you carefully chose.
She was angry at him.
The muscles in her face constricted leaving her eyes barely visible through the incensed slits. Her lip curled to reveal clenched teeth as she continued to glare at him.
The car went fast around the corner.
The beat up Camaro took the corner of Main and 1st on two wheels.
She is old but smart.
The lines on her face and sagging eye lids could not hide the sparkle in her clear, blue eyes.
You might notice that the showing examples are longer than the telling examples. Painting a picture, creating a mind movie of images requires more descriptive words.
Just take care that what you are describing is important in creating the scene and helps keep the story moving -- otherwise it's fluff.
Tips for "Showing" in Your Memoir
Below are some tips for "showing" in your writing:
Start Memoir Writing Today
You may never publish your story or stories but it will be a wonderful gift for family and close friends. Start writing today, you won't be sorry!