Tuesday, October 11, 2011

How to Write an Action Scene

Hello and welcome! Today is part four of the four part writing series on what I learned at the Utah League of Writers Conference. The official title of the seminar was called 'Pacing - Writing at the speed of life' and it was taught by this guy -

Alexander Gordon Smith

He wrote this series -

He has a totally wicked British accent and boy can he write action. He read us a little snippet from his book and I that was really compeling. It's on my TBR list just from that one minute read.

He was shy about his writing, which I thought was great, but he had some great tips when it comes to actions scenes.

His #1 piece of advice - Don't describe everything!

Action scenes should be fast paced and you want the reader to be hanging on the edge of their seat, so if you're telling everything that is going on in the battle around you the reader is going to lose interest. Focus on your Main Character and only tell what they see. If your MC is dodging jabs they aren't going to notice everything around them.

Keep your sentences short and avoid using, he, she and I a lot. Condense everything you can (i.e. Blood in the mouth. The edge of the sword. A flash of teeth. etc.) Most rules of grammar don't apply becasue you want your reader reading quickly.

He gave us quite a bit of time to write, but I found his advice very useful. What tips do you have for writing action scenes?
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