Has something crazy ever happened to you, and you want to tell someone, but you need to figure out the best way to present the story to them? This is what being a writer can feel like, more often than not. We have a great story idea, all the elements, and an outline, but we’re not sure how to best communicate the story.
Let’s talk about it.
While most stories have a beginning, middle, and end, the way each story travels that path varies based on how the events are presented. As you develop your story, decide if you want to communicate the storyline linearly, jumping back and forth in time or using flashbacks as a story device.
Whose POV are we getting the story from? This character will be the conduit through which the reader is given information about the events in the story. Are we getting one character’s POV or several POVs? How does each character’s POV give the reader new insight into the story?
Decide the best way to convey the story and its elements. Does the story have enough material to be novel, or is it a novella or short story? Could it be a screenplay or a play? Each of these requires a different type of communicative style that uniquely delivers information to the reader.
How have others handled stories similar to yours? What genre would it fit into? How have those authors effectively communicated their stories to readers? How can you apply that information to your story to communicate it better?
Put It Out There
If you’ve written out an outline or a draft, give it to someone to read. Let them ask questions. Find ways to communicate the story that keeps them wanting more. Are there points where they lost interest or were confused? Ask them why? Then you can work on fine-tuning those areas to make them stronger and more effective.
Learn From Others
We’ve all seen at least one movie or read a novel where the idea is there, but how it’s communicated and presented fails to capture our interest. Why did this happen? By learning from others, we can strengthen our work by avoiding mistakes.
We often talk about the basics of writing: who, what, where, when, and why. But the final element, how, is just as important when you set out to communicate your story effectively. Deciding the best way to present the narrative can help strengthen your story and give it a greater impact.
Happy Writing, and I’ll see you next time!