give your essay heartbeats

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College Essay Writing | 2013. Give Your Essay Heartbeats. This just sounds like your essay. Mr. Bobweave was a fat, ungrateful old man. That gets the information across, but it’s boring. It simply tells the reader the basics about Mr. Bobweave. Give your essay some beat!. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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  • College Essay Writing | 2013

  • Mr. Bobweave was a fat, ungrateful old man.That gets the information across, but its boring. It simply tells the reader the basics about Mr. Bobweave.

  • Mr. Bobweave heaved himself out of the chair. As his feet spread under his apple-like frame and his arthritic knees popped and cracked in objection, he pounded the floor with his cane while cursing that dreadful girl who was late again with his morning donuts. How do we see hes fat?How do we see hes ungrateful?

  • When in doubt, always ask yourself the who, what, when, where, why, and how of the scene. Include these.

  • He was angry. She felt guilty. He hated her.

    Telling emotion keeps the reader at arms length rather than letting them experience the emotions along with the character.

    Telling: Jennifer was sad because of the death of her daughter.

    Showing: Jennifer stood face to face with the delicate porcelain doll Ellie idolized too much to even play with. The doll stared back, her face held in an immortal smile, mocking. No doll deserved to live longer than the little girl who owned her. Jennifer snatched the doll from the shelf and heaved her toward the far wall. The dolls head exploded like fireworks.

  • She saidsadly. He askedsulkily. She saidangrily.If you feel like you need to use a tag other than said/asked/shouted for the reader to understand your meaning, you have weak dialogue. Rewrite it to incorporate more emotion.

    Telling: Are you sure he escaped? Annabelle asked anxiously.

    Showing: What do you mean hemighthave escaped? Annabelles gaze darted to the door, and she chewed the edge of her thumb nail. He either did or he didnt. Which is it?

  • Telling: She grabbed her bowto shoot the deer. The arrow arced through the air, and lodged in the animals throat. It sank to its knees. Dinner was served.

    Most of this is showing. Except for the part underlined and bolded. The problem is we dont actually see her shoot. Were toldwhyshe grabbed her bow, and then the arrow is flying, but weve skipped the part when she fires the shot.

    Showing: She grabbed her bow, aimed for the deers heart, and released the string. The arrow arced through the air, and lodged in the animals throat. It sank to its knees. Dinner was served.

  • Telling: She was ugly.

    Showing: Richard couldnt stop himself from staring at the button-sized wart in the middle of her forehead. Even if she didnt want it removed, couldnt she have at least plucked the hair?

    Pick one or two carefully chosen details to show us your point of view.

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