Do you bog down the reader with too many details?

How much is enough?

Is the Devil really in the details?

Many of y’all are too young to remember Dragnet, a 1950’s TV series. A movie remake in 1987 starring Dan Aykroyd, and Tom Hanks didn’t do justice to the old B&W series.

But so many times I want to make sure my reader “gets” the point. As a result, too often I bog the reader down in details that just muddy the water.

As Joe Friday used to say, “Just the facts, Ma’am.”

Like many of you readers out there, I sometimes skip through a story like Dorothy on the yellow brick road rushing toward Oz.

No one, myself included wants to read the boring stuff. So how do we strike a balance?

Jerry Jenkins wrote, How to Evoke Powerful Images in Your Reader’s Mind

In his post, he suggests that too often as writers, we crush the reader’s imagination instead of igniting the images.

Don’t force the details. Every reader wants an “ah-ha” moment.

Don’t strive for the reader to see what you see.

Resist the urge to explain and trust the reader to follow their own path of discovery.

So what do you think? Is your writing lighting fires or crushing the reader under the boulders of information?

You’ve made it this far so give me just two more seconds and hit Facebook and Twitter and share.
Thank you!
If you’re not already, I’d be much obliged if you would follow me @jeancogdell on Twitter or jean.cogdell on Facebook!

Writers light your fireworks!

English: Fireworks on the Fourth of July
English: Fireworks on the Fourth of July (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The fourth of July is a great time to set sparks flying and write a sizzling fireworks showstopper of your own.

Light up the sky, and stop those summer blahs from getting to you.



Your muse is gonna love the show.



Here is the website to help get those creative juices flowing and make this your hottest summer ever with a list of Fire Starters.


Related articles