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Exploding a Moment

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Presentation on theme: "Exploding a Moment"— Presentation transcript:

1 Exploding a Moment

2 Explode a Moment Finding places in your writing where zooming in will make your reader "feel" right there "in the moment" with your character.

3 Figure out what emotion your character is experiencing: then, use details to describe the situation that will make the reader feel the same way.

4 Example: This character is on stage for a piano competition. She's forgotten the next note, and she's nervous.

5 My right hand was in mid air when I realized, with a sickening lurch in my stomach, that I didn't know where to go next. Finally I decided to skip the last two measures and jump into the arpeggio section, and the auditorium again filled with sound. This does not yet SHOW the nervousness. It's not much of a complication in the story yet, because we don't feel what she's feeling:

6 This time, let's explode this moment because it has potential to allow our reader to feel her nervousness. Let's separate the first and last sentence: My right hand was in mid air when I realized, with a sickening lurch in my stomach, that I didn't know where to go next.... show nervousness here with added details Finally I decided to skip the last two measures and jump into the arpeggio section, and the auditorium again filled with sound.

7 My right hand was in mid air when I realized, with a sickening lurch in my stomach, that I didn't know where to go next. I felt my legs and back suddenly tighten. My eyes searched up and down the keyboard for the right note, my right hand darting to possible positions as I prayed that one might feel familiar. Hurried by the awkward silence, I finally chose a note and played it, my ears cringing and my heart thumping heavier as it proved to be the wrong choice. My thoughts raced ahead. The part of my mind that tried desperately to recover the forgotten music drowned in my black hole of despair. Seconds ticked by, and the emptiness in the auditorium forced me to make a decision: skip the last two measures, and jump into the the arpeggio section. The auditorium again filled with sound.

8 Now, let's analyze what was added. Look at what propelled the action of this moment: participial openings, figurative language, painting with action verbs, painting with participles.

9 Now, you do it. Find several places where exploding the moment will add to a crucial point in your story. For each one, insert an * and next to it, write the emotion you want to convey at that point.

10 My right hand was in mid air when I realized, with a sickening lurch in my stomach, that I didn't know where to go next. I felt my legs and back suddenly tighten. My eyes searched up and down the keyboard for the right note, my right hand darting to possible positions as I prayed that one might feel familiar. Hurried by the awkward silence, I finally chose a note and played it, my ears cringing and my heart thumping heavier as it proved to be the wrong choice. My thoughts raced ahead. The part of my mind that tried desperately to recover the forgotten music drowned in my black hole of despair. Seconds ticked by, and the emptiness in the auditorium forced me to make a decision: skip the last two measures, and jump into the the arpeggio section. The auditorium again filled with sound.


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