Tag Archives: summarizing

Summarizing a Conversation Snippet

Stacey Kite

Every writer has strengths and weaknesses. A writer who is a natural at dialog may struggle with action or description or something else. My Achilles’ heel is narrative summary—in all its many forms. (Arrrg!) That is a problem, because every book has narrative summary.

When it’s done well, readers don’t even notice the summarizing. It just seems like a natural part of the story. But if it’s not done well, it sticks out—like mustard on ice cream. Continue reading

Snagging on Summarizing

Stacey Kite

There are lots of places in a book where the reader needs some detail but not a lot:

  • When one character has to explain something to another character that the reader already knows.
  • When characters travel from one place to another, but nothing key to the plot happens during the journey itself.
  • When significant time passes between the end of one scene and the beginning of the next.
  • When transitioning from one important sequence within a scene to the next key sequence.

In those cases—and a lot of others—writers summarize. Maybe summarize isn’t the correct literary term, maybe it’s telling when showing would be a waste of time. Either way, it’s something I struggle with. Continue reading