Go At Your Own Pace

Day 28

Pacing

As you look back at your stories this week did you notice anything in particular about pacing — How quickly the action flowed from one incident to the next?

The prompt

Write a story paying attention to the pacing

Tips

  • In a fast, plot driven story your pacing will be fast, too. Things happen quickly. We’re off. We run. Things happen. The language reflects that. There’s not a lot of standing around looking at things once the action gets underway. That’s not to say that you can’t have slow passages and descriptive moments. However, they generally come before the quick action happens.

  • In a literary or inward-focused story, the pacing is more languorous, with your characters pausing lots of delicious description, a whole lot of internal dialogue and long sentences with lots of complex clauses.

  • Within every story the pacing should vary. If you attempt to write a whole story at one pace, you will either leave your readers breathless, or bored.

  • Remember to make the language match the emotion of the moment: choppy and brisk when things are exciting, long and complex sentences when things are relaxed.

Leave a comment telling us what piece you were aiming for today, overall. Did you notice anything about your writing as you looked over your pieces this week?

8 thoughts on “Go At Your Own Pace”

  1. Today, instead of the current prompt, I decided to finish a story from a few days ago- one where I completed a big chunk, and put commands for myself to finish at another time.

    The whole story is now about 2000 words, and with my busy schedule, would have been too big for one day. Going back to it is helping me get better at filling things in, and becoming a little more tolerant of outlining. It could still use a lot of work, but it’s done as a draft and has a beg, middle, and end. Day 28!! Wahoo.

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