Writing Forums

Writing Forums is a privately-owned, community managed writing environment. We provide an unlimited opportunity for writers and poets of all abilities, to share their work and communicate with other writers and creative artists. We offer an experience that is safe, welcoming and friendly, regardless of your level of participation, knowledge or skill. There are several opportunities for writers to exchange tips, engage in discussions about techniques, and grow in your craft. You can also participate in forum competitions that are exciting and helpful in building your skill level. There's so much more for you to explore!

Please help me describe this !!! (1 Viewer)

hello, I'm not much of a writer and I have trouble with describing what I imagine into words. I'm writing this moment in my life where I woke up in the middle of the night and saw the balcony light shinning. I walked to it and saw my aunt looking outwards into the night. You can make out out the shadows of the mountains hear the cicadas and the sea waves. She seemed absent-minded or captivated and didn't notice I was there until I slid the door open.

I want my writing to flow so can anyone please help me out with this?
 

Foxee

Patron
Patron
Two problems you've mentioned here: Trouble describing in words and being 'not much of a writer'. There is one solution that will address both of these.

Write. Write a LOT.

Also read. Do that, too.

Learning how to describe a scene in flowing prose is a matter of practice more than one of instruction.

I can tell you to expand on what you've said here in your post, expand on the things that you've sensed that you want to write about. Think of each of the five senses...you have observed sight and sound. Think about adding scent, too. There is also the elusive idea of a sixth sense and that can reasonably be considered a sense of the unknown which your scene has in it to some degree.

It's a lovely idea. Please write it out as prose and share it, then I think we can be a bit more helpful.
 

VRanger

Staff member
Administrator
hello, I'm not much of a writer and I have trouble with describing what I imagine into words. I'm writing this moment in my life where I woke up in the middle of the night and saw the balcony light shinning. I walked to it and saw my aunt looking outwards into the night. You can make out out the shadows of the mountains hear the cicadas and the sea waves. She seemed absent-minded or captivated and didn't notice I was there until I slid the door open.

I want my writing to flow so can anyone please help me out with this?
That was a lovely scene, and almost good as you wrote it. Now just clean it up a bit and post it again. You're really not far from being there, you only have to realize that.
 

bdcharles

Wɾ¡ʇ¡∩9
Staff member
Media Manager
hello, I'm not much of a writer and I have trouble with describing what I imagine into words. I'm writing this moment in my life where I woke up in the middle of the night and saw the balcony light shinning. I walked to it and saw my aunt looking outwards into the night. You can make out out the shadows of the mountains, hear the cicadas and the sea waves. She seemed absent-minded or captivated and didn't notice I was there until I slid the door open.

I want my writing to flow so can anyone please help me out with this?
I think this is reasonably well-enough written.
 

TheMightyAz

Staff member
Mentor
My answer is going to be a none answer unfortunately. It's one thing adjusting and advising on the basis of construction, it's another actually providing the writing itself. Imagine you joined a pottery class and then asked the teacher to form a pot on your wheel because you were struggling. Do you think he/she would do that? YOU have to provide the pot for the teacher to then explain how the pot could have been better made. Flow will come from practice and listening to advice you find helpful. You have actually provided a pot, so let's take a look:

I woke in the middle of the night and saw the balcony light shinning. As I walked to it, I saw my aunt looking outwards into the night. I could make out out the shadows of the mountains, hear the cicadas and the ocean waves. She seemed absent-minded or captivated and didn't notice I was there until I slid the door open.

It wouldn't end there though. Writing and improving is a long process and the more you do it, the more you improve. The simple answer is to provide the material and let others help adjust that material. I have a snippets thread designed specifically for people like yourself and I made it because I was once you and to an extent still am.

Read through that from start to finish because there's lots of advice that will be relevant to you, and when you've done that, write paragraphs you'd like advice on. Don't be put off by the fact you'll ALWAYS get critiqued. Just keep on writing and providing content. The difference between someone who is successful at honing their writing is simply determination, repetition and a thick skin.
 

TheMightyAz

Staff member
Mentor
I couldn't edit my post above for some reason. From what you've said, that is the thread for you:

 

Theglasshouse

WF Veterans
I have the same problem. It is well described however it might lack a situation, lead, idea or a starting point which are all words for the same problem or issue to generate ideas ( for a description paragraph to grow from ideas you need a story problem and the book on how to describe mentions some prewriting strategies). I have read that a narrative paragraph should not switch to description and description to narration. I honestly research about this topic a lot. I have problems writing description that doesn't flow. I honestly think it takes practice and maybe a specific book on journaling will do the trick. For me since my book got lost I will buy it again later date since I think someone stole it.

This is the latest book I have set my eyes on to purchase to write description of several throughout the years. I will buy the book I lost on a later date.It has these ideas supplied by professional writers. It advises to research description.

Teaching Writing in Middle School: Tips, Tricks, and Techniques: Tips, Tricks and Techniques​


Supposedly real writers were consulted to write this book. I haven't bought it yet. But I have the money to do so. Going to buy the digital version today or tomorrow.

I bought the little red writing book a while ago, but someone stole it. It was by Mark Tredinnick.I

The book above has some explanations on how to make the topics flow.
 
Last edited:

Theglasshouse

WF Veterans
My suggestion is to use a visual dictionary for details such as the one that is located in Merriam Webster's website. Any questions?
 

Ralph Rotten

Staff member
Media Manager
hello, I'm not much of a writer and I have trouble with describing what I imagine into words. I'm writing this moment in my life where I woke up in the middle of the night and saw the balcony light shinning. I walked to it and saw my aunt looking outwards into the night. You can make out out the shadows of the mountains hear the cicadas and the sea waves. She seemed absent-minded or captivated and didn't notice I was there until I slid the door open.

I want my writing to flow so can anyone please help me out with this?

Except for a misspelling, you seem to be off to a good start. Write thru the scene.
If you don't like it, write it over.
Then write it from a different perspective, or change the voice.
Make it first person, or write it as a journal entry.
Practice, practice, practice.

Then when it's really good, show it to someone.
If they give feedback, shut up and listen.
Don't debate with them, or argue over how youwrote a character.
Take the feedback and learn from it.
 

Theglasshouse

WF Veterans
Last bit of advice on this:

I bought this for kindle. It lists over 10-15 library links. I feel like I can finally write a description. It is very cheap and I recommend it to all writers. It's a book on how to research anything without leaving home. As of this writing, this might be the best book that may impact my research. So much I won't be at a loss for words. It's written by a real librarian and it shows., It's a steal at its current price. At 3 dollars it is worth getting.

Research is a valuable skill in writing. This is written for writers and essayists.

Carter, Vikki J. ; Librarian, The Author's. Research Like a Librarian: Research Help and Tips for Writers for Researching in the Digital Age

You need a real location so look up architecture in one of the library links. You need to know the exact term of what you are looking for. That way you can find it right away on the internet. Base it on a famous location.

Here's only one link I will share that will help you accomplish the part on describing the balcony. Look at the architecture link. This link is one of the many in the book which I strongly encourage people to try out and buy. A writer can't be without a library. It provides better ways than searching than just google and Wikipedia. The digital weblinks can really help anyone who is not located near a library.

http://www.libraryspot.com

You can always ask experts. There's even a link for that and it is not quora.
 

Phil Istine

WF Veterans
hello, I'm not much of a writer and I have trouble with describing what I imagine into words. I'm writing this moment in my life where I woke up in the middle of the night and saw the balcony light shinning. I walked to it and saw my aunt looking outwards into the night. You can make out out the shadows of the mountains hear the cicadas and the sea waves. She seemed absent-minded or captivated and didn't notice I was there until I slid the door open.

I want my writing to flow so can anyone please help me out with this?
I really think you ought to try writing it yourself then posting for suggestions in the Fiction Workshop (or non-fiction if that's more appropriate).
I'll kick off by saying that light tends to shine rather than shin, therefore, it's shining rather than shinning.

When working on an extract, it can be difficult, sometimes impossible, to shoehorn it into a larger piece with no knowledge of the tone, mood, characters etc. For all we know the MC might have woken up agitated from a difficult dream and be in need of the toilet and the racket from the cicadas is getting on his nerves. Or it may be a more relaxing environment which you appear to be indicating.
 
Top