|Fénix (spacelogic) wrote in fanficrants,|
@ 2008-03-30 13:42:00
"she said shrilly, squeezing her hands...."
Fic Author #1:
You've decided that a character's voice is husky? Good for you. Go ahead and talk about her husky voice as much as you want. I'll be over here disagreeing with the use of the adjective for the specific character in question, but it doesn't bother me if you use it.
However, once you've established that her voice is husky, please stop having her say things "huskily." Technically speaking, that's incorrect because it means her voice is sounding huskier than it normally does, not just that it is a husky voice generally as you seem to be trying to say, but more importantly it's dull. Use the same word or term too much and the reader might get into "Goodnight Moon" mode, as I did in this case -- saying what comes next before reading it. Do you really want to be that predictable?
P. S. For the love of God, STOP USING STRINGS OF PERIODS EVERYWHERE. (An ellipsis, by the way, is three periods. Five is right out.)
Fic Author #2:
I see you're writing a sex scene between two women. Would you like some help? Good. To start with, cut all the pronouns out. All of them. I don't care if you wind up calling someone "the brunette" a thousand times; you can go back later and put pronouns in where they work, but the thing is, if you start out using pronouns, it's easy to get lost. This is true whenever two people of the same gender are physically interacting, whether they're having sex or fighting. I shall provide a made-up example:
"Larry clung fiercely to Joe's wrists, but Joe was stronger, and though he struggled desperately, the other held to his purpose and, in a swift gesture, thrust the knife squarely into his stomach."
Yes, I deliberately overdid that one so as to make the problem clear. It looks like Joe is the one struggling desperately ("he" referring to the last mentioned subject) but in context it must be Larry. Weirder is the "his" in the last part of the sentence -- is Joe stabbing himself or Larry? Is Larry trying to protect himself, or to prevent his friend from committing suicide?
In sex scenes, this same problem can lead to characters apparently orally pleasuring themselves, playing with an unspecified person's genitals, removing an unspecified person's clothing, and so forth. Sure, context usually clears that up, but sometimes the action is ambiguous enough that it could apply either way. For example, say Sarah licks "her" fingers and it's ambiguous -- is she licking her own fingers to taste her partner's "love juice" or whatever awful name you've come up with for it on them, or is she licking her partner's fingers as a potentially erotic action? This kind of question, believe it or not, can be sufficiently distracting to pull the reader out of the story -- a loss by any author's terms.
Summary of both: Think about the words you use, people!