Details

Still slogging through the middle of the book. It’s okay, I’m just taking it scene by scene and keeping in mind what other writers who have been here say. Just get the story down right now. Fix it later. Nobody ever has to see this shitty first draft but me. Revision is where I can layer in the details.

Because details, Stephen King reminds us in the May/June issue of Writer’s Digest, is what hooks readers, what absorbs them, what finally makes a book feel real. “Making people believe the unbelievable is no trick; it’s work…An overturned tricycle in the gutter of an abandoned neighborhood can stand for everything.”

So while I’m slogging and not yet sweating out the finer details of my story, I’m reading what other writers have to say about the process and also reading really good books. This weekend I read Drop City by T. C. Boyle and The Diving Bell and the Butterfly by Jean Dominque Bauby. Very different books about wildly divergent subjects, both divinely detailed.

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