Frank's Writing Tips and Bachelor Cookbook: Show, Don't Tell by MLR

Frank's Writing Tips and Bachelor Cookbook: Show, Don't Tell


8 February 2014 at 19:58:48 MST

One of those basic things you hear about all the time that maybe isn't so basic. So here I try to elaborate on it and correct some possible misconceptions (that may not be misconceptions, but you never know).
Incidentally, it is also possible to show via telling. Yeah. Think about that one for a minute.

The cover artwork here, I'll note, is symbolic regarding the content of this piece. And it was a good excuse to draw Frank holding a bloody human heart.

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    I started laughing at, "leave the skins on unless you're a pussy," envisioning someone saying that on a cooking show.

    As much as I hate to say this (yet it works since this is common on furry sites), but porn writing is basically a lot of telling. You can accomplish a lot of sex in writing simply by showing the characters heated interaction, sounds, moans, touching, grabbing, etc., and totally know they're having intercourse without ever describing his thingy entered said orifice till climax. Sure, telling is useful in porn writing, and I see nothing wrong with that. It helps get the point across by describing everything like a amateur video (which is kinda the point), but if you are simply writing a story with erotic elements, showing the interaction tends to come across better.

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      I bet Julia Child would say that.
      That is true about erotic writing in general, it seems (the amateur stuff, anyhow). Honestly, it seems like it's something that's just hard to get right (not that I've tried); I'm thinking of, for example, the Clan of the Cave Bear and that whole series (Earth's Children?). Jean Auel there writes a whole lot of explicit sex, which are generally fine, but she does it all using words like 'member' and 'voluptuous release' and so on and so forth, and it still sounds a little awkward. Honestly, the best example of it I've seen is probably Kyell Gold, who does do a lot of rather matter-of-fact telling, but it's always coupled with the emotional side of things, which just serves to make it more interesting. I guess the difference comes from whether or not you're writing simply to get people off.

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    What I've been waiting for! I'm going to try my best to take these notes and apply them, and hopefully see results.

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      All righty. Well, hopefully you get some use out of this.

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        All of it, really. If there will be more, I hope to learn from those as well!