Farming for writers.

I’ve been doing a lot of reviews lately, while I put my latest work on the porch–out of the way, and ignored.

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One thing I’ve noticed is that writers aren’t farming their information. And yes, I’ve done this myself.

What is farming?  Providing the information needed in slow drips and letting it grow.  Why?  Because tons of backstory at the beginning of your book is boring.  You’ve got that perfect first chapter, a great plot but you slow down the progression by delving into the mundane.

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If a reader has to know a, b, c, and d, before chapter 6 to understand that ‘The map is the key to the forest, and only the unicorns can enter Jannon on Tuesdays, on the first blue moon in Saturn.  The rider needs to wear pink underwear and a candy cane bra which can only be found on a moonless night, within three days of a blue moon on a beach guarded by toad-men.  Men who were ‘insensitive’ in life, and have been cursed to spend life as a toad until the princess comes and kisses one.  The toad-men can only speak when directly spoken to and answer in rhymes that must first be deciphered before the unicorn enters Jannon, a magical world of sex and orgasms.

Yeah, don’t do that in one paragraph or a freaking page… eek it out.  Look for the map, which leads to the clues.  Giving a reader ‘get a, b, c, and d’ all at once is overwhelming.

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I have a weird imagination.  Actually, wait for a sec while I write out an outline.

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Also, skip the normal.  

The phone rang. I answered, “Hello?”

“Hi. Is this So-n-so?”

I sighed.  “No, it’s Mrs. Hanky Panky.”

“Oh, sorry.  Right.  So, may I speak to So-n-so?”

I checked the family room and hollered upstairs.  No answer.  “Sorry, she’s not in.”

“Do you know when she’ll be back?”

Headlights poured in through the family room window.  “Wait. A car just pulled up. Would you hold on for a moment?”

UGH.  Don’t do that!!!  

bloody stairs

That’s true to life and freaking boring. What’s important?

Either- 1.  Add in something to keep me interested.  

The phone rang. I answered, stepping over a puddle of blood. “Hello?”

“Hi. Is this So-n-so?”

I sighed.  So much work to do!

Red bits of brain dripped on the stairs like a broken faucet.  “No, it’s Mrs. Hanky Panky.”

“Oh, sorry.  Right.  So, may I speak to So-n-so?”

I checked the family room and hollered upstairs.  No answer. Which, if she answered, wouldn’t that be freaky?  Dead girls don’t talk back.   “Sorry, she’s not in.”

Technically, yes, she was home.  Kinda dead though. Just a wee bit of a lie.

“Do you know when she’ll be back?”

Headlights poured in through the family room window.  Ah, more meat for the party! “Wait. A car just pulled up. Would you hold on for a moment?”

“That’s me and my sister. Can we wait on So-n-so?  She wanted to go see the movie with us.”

Perfect. Meat and dessert.

Or #2, cut it down to what’s important.

A car pulled up the drive.  Headlights poured in through the family room window piercing the darkness.  The cell-phone shook in my hand.  “A car just pulled up. Would you hold on for a moment?”

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Why do you need the whole conversation?  You don’t!  What is important? Set the scene, set the mood. In the first example, more words, more descriptions.  In the above example, fewer words make your point.

Whichever way you chose, make it interesting.

 

 

Time to go! My cat’s giving me the evil eye.  Apparently, the new and improved ‘cat food’ isn’t up to snuff.

 

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