Thursday, April 12, 2012

K = Kinetic Energy / ACTION

Kinetic Energy is energy of an object in motion. Writers imagine objects in motion as they tell their story. But all motion isn't necessary to the story. Consider these questions:

Is the action essential to the story?

Is the action essential to the character?

Is the action moving toward the climax?

By answering these questions the writer will determine if the scene is required by the story, if not, what is the purpose of the scene?

Sam moved from the stove to the counter and pulled his cup from the cupboard. He decided this morning he’d take a risk: he’d have eggs instead of toast for breakfast. He poured coffee from the pot into his cup. He reached for the drawer handle, pulled it open. He noticed the spoons had moved from the momentum of his pull, he readjusted the silverware three times before selected a spoon for the sugar then slid the drawer closed.

Sam’s story has nothing to do with breakfast or coffee, but he is OCD. To determine which portions to keep and which to possibly cut consider how much detail is needed in the story and the overall word count or the project. Is Sam a main character? Is this scene at breakfast telling something new and/or essential?

The kinetic energy has ebb and flow, a rise and fall of energy pushing the story’s momentum forward. The only required action moves toward the climax but readers also want to understand the characters motivation. The best stories have reason for every action.

4 comments:

Joanne said...

kinetic is a great word. Good advice too. It really is fun to see what folks are doing with the letters.

Sharkbytes said...

Kinetic is good. Writing is sometimes knowing what to leave out. I'm trying to visit all the A-Z Challenge Blogs this month.

Jeremy Bates said...

Spot on. Sometimes I read superfluous words that have no bearing on the story, perhaps simply written for word count.

Kate O'Mara said...

Thank you for commenting on Kinetic Energy. <3 Kate