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Using “Show Don’t Tell” Examples In Writing A Story

A “Show Don’t Tell” is probably one of the most common advices that anyone could receive when trying to write or have tried to write. The “Show Don’t Tell” advice is probably the type of advice which can always be heard by all of the writers no matter how long they have been writing. But what exactly does it mean?

When we tell people something, we usually summarize. Just like saying “I bought a new bed today.” But in case that you wanted to let the people show what you bought, you will probably dig into details. In the case where you would let the person see what you have bought, you will probably let the person see the details such as explaining why you bought the new bed, maybe based on the sagging mattress or other discomfort that it gave you. Apart from the reason why you bought a new bed, you may have probably explained how you went to different mattress stores just to choose the best one after you have compared them by lying down on it. Apart from explaining how you went to the store where you bought the new bed, you will even explain how you compared the different prices of mattresses and beds and how the salesman helped you in choosing the best mattress that would best suit your needs. Moreover, you will also explain how your bed got delivered to your home. Of course, you would convey to the person you are talking how much excitement you felt as sleep in your new bed at night. In writing a script, buying a new bed may sound boring, however, as long as you know how to be creative in showing it, then the writing can definitely be very interesting and even humorous.

Nor does it matter whether we are writing fiction or non-fiction in telling the story. In both cases, we need to show rather than just tell to create an effective story. Non-fiction requires great storytelling just as much as fiction because stories are what readers will relate to so they are able to apply your information to their lives.

Self-help style is usually the type of help that a lot of writers depend on in order to create a wonderful and fruitful non-fiction story. Other forms of non-fiction such as history or biography obviously require storytelling, but many types of non-fiction may not come to mind immediately as in need of storytelling. We all love a good story, so whenever it is applicable, tell one.

Another example is writing a self-help book. One of your points is the importance of making people think you are interested in them by asking questions and listening to them.

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