The cure for sick writing

writing craft Jun 08, 2022

Do your characters sigh a lot?

Do they roll their eyes? Catch their breath?

Do their hearts race and their stomachs tighten?

Do chills and goosebumps frequently arise on their tingling skin? 

Do they gaze, smile, and smile some more? Do they smile while gazing? Smile while gazing and feeling tingles and racing hearts, during which they can barely breathe?

My dear storyteller, you are not alone! 

Who else does this? So. Many. Writers. It’s practically a rite of passage for writers to start out their illustrious careers by generating prose that is jam-packed with this kind of stuff.

I call it symptomatic writing. In real life we’d head off to the urgent care to find out what’s wrong. In fiction, our well-intentioned efforts to put emotion on the page can too easily result in all this clichéd physical expression, which quickly becomes tedious (even to us).

What’s worse: A bad case of symptomatic writing deprives our readers of what they actually need to fully imagine our story! We create less emotion, not more.

Is there a cure? I promise you there is. That’s what today’s livestream will be all about.

p.s. – This topic is inspired by another great conversation inside the Path of the Storyteller community. If you’d like to join us, please make sure you’re on the mailing list. You can sign up directly below.

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