Monday, April 13, 2009

Everyone’s Different – thank heavens

Last weekend I spent a night in Banff with my sister in laws and mother in law. I know what you’re thinking but I actually get along really well with my in-laws. Anyway we were discussing books that we’ve read recently and what we look for in a book.

Some loved interesting characters, some loved reading detailed description, some loved the plot.

I have to admit I fall into the latter category.

I am all about plot. I love reading and writing a fast paced story where there’s always something happening or on the verge of happening. I like good characters as well but I like them doing something.

I also don’t love a lot of description. I have a hard time reading pages of what a mountain looks like (just a random example). I’m a minimalist when it comes to describing things and I’ve had to work hard to change that. Although I still fight it on a regular basis.

Lots of times when I’m writing something new I’ll write in (ADD DESCRIPTION) so I can get on with the story.

What about you? Plot or Character or Setting? What do you like writing or reading the most?


Jessie Oliveros said...

Like you I am all about plot. While writing my first draft my priority is 1-plot 2-character and 3-setting. And the juicy descriptions will HAVE to come later. I'm thinking that your "add descriptions" note is very wise.

One thing I try to think about when describing a place, however, is what would I see, hear, smell, and hear?? Probably not all because that would be a bit of sensory overload, but it's so easy to stick to what the character sees when there is so much more.

And when I read a book, it is the plot that snags me. Wow, longest comment ever.

Heidi Willis said...

When reading I'm a plot person too. Get me through the story at a breakneck pace and I'm happy. Spend too long describing something and I realize it's two in the morning and I need to put a bookmark in it.

Writing though... I love me some characters. I used to use lots of description but I noticed in the last book there was hardly a word of it. But I love using action and dialog to give some character depth.

Of course, I'm not published yet, so maybe I should rethink my priorities...

Jessie Oliveros said...

I meant to say hear, smell, see and FEEL. Anyway, I'm sending the first three back to you. And I have to say your plot has great beginnings! Excited for the next installment.

Patti said...

Jessie: That was a long post but well worth the read.

Heidi I agree with you I love using dialogue and action to reveal a character.