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Episode Info: It’s Writing Tip Time and we’re going to give you three fast and dirty writing tips today that’s going to make your writing more intense. Ready?  Think about your tense  What’s that mean? It means don’t be writing like things are happening now and then shift over to writing like things were happening in the past. If you want the most immediate writing experience, write in the present tense. Here’s a quick example:  I lost feeling on my entire left side of my body during our long run on Friday. I thought I might be having a stroke.  That’s in the past tense, right? We read this, notice it’s in the first person and figure that the narrator has survived because she’s telling us about this after-the-fact.  Try it out in the present tense:  I lose feeling on my entire left side of my body during our long run. I think I might be having a stroke.  It’s more intense, right?  Let’s make it more intense. Intense dog look from SpartyTake out the distancing words.  In first person especially, it’s really hard to get away from a lot of lookingand knowingand words that pull us out of the moment and the immediacy of the character’s experience. Distancing language tends to be the words like ‘seem,’ and ‘look,’ and ‘heard,’ and ‘know.’ When I revise, I think of these words as placeholders for where I can go back and dig in more deeply in certain places.  So, let’s take that sentence again and make it more immediate.  I lose feeling on my entire left side of my body during our long run. I think I might be having a stroke.  Change that up and it looks like:  My entire left side of my body starts going numb during our long run. My left foot numbs first. Then my left hand and arm. When the left side of my mouth starts going numb, I gasp. I might be having a stroke.  You’re in there a bit more with that character now right. Is she having a stroke? What the heck is she running for? SHE IS BROKEN!  Try not to use the same word too many times too closely together.  In the example above I deliberately use the word ‘numb’ and ‘my left’ over and over again. I’m cool with the repetition of ‘my left,’ but not so much with the numb. There are better, cooler words to mix in there and grab the reader’s attention. Let’s try.  My entire left side of my body starts going numb during our long run. My left foot disappears first. Then my left hand and arm. When the left side of my mouth starts to tingle, I gasp. I might be having a stroke.  There you go!  We’ve learned three fast tips to making your writing more intense.  Random Thoughts:  In our random thought time, we go to Denny’s and Dunkin’ Donuts and talk about dog poop as well as this article. You should listen and rejoice in our weirdness.  Writing Tip of the Pod: Be in the present (tense). Don’t be distant. Mix up your words, man. Dog Tip for ...
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