I went out to lunch today. Taco Bell. Not much there for the the health and weight conscious. I was lazy and ordered a meal combo, complete with a soda drink. Now all afternoon I've been berating myself: "Don't you know by now that diet pop kills brain cells? You need every cell up there to do this job."
I so want to be healthy and take off extra pounds, but I keep falling back on lazy habits of eating what is fast and what seems to be -- at the time -- most tasty.
While reading through some things this week, I've noticed some old habits that authors seems to fall back into even after having had the lessons. One of those is with motivation/reaction.
What's wrong with this? --
Jill’s hearted jumped and the pitchfork fell from her grasp. A gun fired outside the barn, and she ran to the door to see riders entering the yard.In the sample, we are getting reaction before we see what motivated this response. The reader needs to watch things evolve from external action to internal response in order to follow your story smoothly.
Sometimes this problem is more subtly presented in a story, but a problem all the same.
A voice rang out as she passed by her neighbor’s house. “Still working at the five-and-dime?” Mrs. Matthews asked, reaching down to fetch the morning paper.Loretta would have already "looked" if her POV has acknowledged the speaker and her action.
Loretta looked over at her good friend and smiled.
Randy Ingermanson has a good lesson that includes this issue offered free on his site called "Writing the Perfect Scene."
Check it out, then check your latest work for lazy little gremlins like this that keep trying to sneak into your story.
Have you seen one that made it to publication? If you have, post an example of what not to do.