Agree or disagree?

Show versus tell

is the single most important aspect of storytelling

and the one new writers mess up most often.

Agree or disagree?

Published by Dan Alatorre AUTHOR

International bestselling author Dan Alatorre has 17 titles published in over a dozen languages. From Romance in Poggibonsi to action and adventure in the sci-fi thriller The Navigators, to comedies like Night Of The Colonoscopy: A Horror Story (Sort Of) and the heartwarming and humorous anecdotes about parenting in the popular Savvy Stories series, his knack for surprising audiences and making you laugh or cry - or hang onto the edge of your seat - has been enjoyed by audiences around the world. And you are guaranteed to get a page turner every time. “That’s my style,” Dan says. “Grab you on page one and then send you on a roller coaster ride, regardless of the story or genre.” Readers agree, making his string of #1 bestsellers popular across the globe. He will make you chuckle or shed tears, sometimes on the same page. His novels always contain twists and turns, and his nonfiction will stay in your heart forever. Dan resides in the Tampa area with his wife and daughter. You can find him blogging away almost every day on www.DanAlatorre or watch his hilarious YouTube show every week Writers Off Task With Friends. Dan’s marketing book 25 eBook Marketing Tips You Wish You Knew has been a valuable tool for new authors (it’s free if you subscribe to his newsletter) and his dedication to helping other authors is evident in his helpful blog.

23 thoughts on “Agree or disagree?

  1. If it’s happening right now – show it; if it’s not happening right now, what’s the best way to tell it and get back to the story that’s happening now?

    1. *Raises hand*

      I’ve done that.

      I had a scene in a book where a guy had to spend eight or 12 hours stuck at a train station during a worker strike. My editor was like, cut all this. Just say he was stuck all day in the train station!


  2. that’s a hard call. I want to disagree and say dialogue is what new writers mess up the most but that’s purely my personal experience from working with teenagers.
    Maybe older new writers mess up other things.

  3. Question of balance. Shift from one to the other as the narrative requires, then check it back on the re-write and ask yourself…..’Does anyone really want to ready this bit?’

      1. Yeh, particularly if you sit there alone and try and do an audio book version….Oooh that can be harsh, particularly when you are half way through a paragraph and you’re thinking…..

  4. I don’t know that I would say it is the MOST important aspect of storytelling. I personally find pacing to absolutely vital. Bad pacing will ruin a story that ticks all the other boxes. Knowing when to show vs when to tell does play into pacing. I definitely think new writers (and many veteran writers) struggle with pacing.

  5. My editor said the same thing, “.. too much detail. The reader can figure it out.” I agree with storytelling, showing is always better than saying. If it is the Most important, I think there are other things just as important (i.e. character development, story pace, etc.) But I’m a novice still learning.

  6. Holding my hands up, one of the most difficult lessons for me to learn, and I still haven’t finished learning by any means, is the difference between show and tell. Dan knows, he helps me a lot. I don’t know if it’s because I’m dyspraxic and my brain is hard-wired different, (very true please look it up) or if it’s just a very long, sharp learning curve. However, I am getting better. I do love descriptive prose, but that is my thing as a reader. Great one this week, Dan. 🙂

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