Holidays enchant us with snowmen, gingerbread people, and candy canes. They can also be full of drama: Uncle Ralph and Aunt Sally in a snit at the dining room table or overtired children throwing tantrums in the middle of the mall. And don’t even get me started about the company Christmas party when Roger in Accounting had too much to drink and….well you get the idea.
Anyway, all these scenes are subjects for writers. Opportunities to observe the human condition to see what it can offer our storytelling. Read more
No one wants to be known for writing flat, boring, cardboard characters. Luckily, I learned from Truman Capote that it’s not the information you tell about a character but how you show it that makes all the difference.
In one of my favorite short stories, A Christmas Memory, Capote builds finely detailed characters by offering interesting and sometimes odd descriptions of them. His character description goes beyond simple physical details. The description propels the story by setting a tone and introducing contrast and tension. Read more