Friday, January 6, 2012

Storyteller's Journey

           What is Perfect Pace?

As writers we all know that the pace of our story must propel the plot forward - scene by scene. But at what speed?
Recently I exchanged books with a good writer friend of mine - it was an eye-opening experience. She felt the book I shared was written at too slow a pace - she didn't enjoy it. The book I received from her felt like reading words thrown on the page from a shotgun! This brought to mind the topic: what is perfect pace? Clearly it can be a matter of personal taste; I have always enjoyed stories written in an almost poetic style - with lots of whimsical word choices. One thing is for sure: the text must be tight, and each scene should lead to the next scene like a domino falling into its neighbor - causing a chain reaction in the telling of the story. This tends to bring about a consistent, constantly moving pace. I have found a story with too slow a pace usually has a lot of unnecessary rambling - something I have fallen victim to many times!

What are your thoughts on pace? Do you have any helpful tips on this topic?

1 comment:

  1. That is a really intriguing question, and you're right--it does seem quite subjective. Everyone has different reading (and writing) rhythms. Although there may be a fine line between a leisurely pace and a plodding one with a bit too much rambling. I try to keep my pace fairly quick, but have gotten varied responses from critiquers. :)