Does psychology support the show-don’t-tell writing maxim?

December 8, 2011 § 4 Comments

When of the most common things an aspiring writer will hear about writing is “show don’t tell.” I come across it ad nauseum in blogs, books, and conversations. “Don’t tell me he was upset,” they say, “show me he was upset.” But there are a lot of other “rules” in the writing world that are founded on the current literary climate and personal styles, rather than laws of the writing universe.  It’s hardly worth mentioning that storytelling methods have evolved over time and people don’t write today the same way that Jane Austen wrote, who didn’t write the same way as the authors that came before her, and people breaking rules is how that evolution happens. For example, I think the fear and loathing that is often expressed towards adverbs is overstated and (at least for me) counterproductive. Despite their overuse, there is a time and a place to use it, like any other part of speech. This has left me to ponder the age-old struggle between showing and telling.

Enter the psychologists. Joan Peskin and Janet Astington, who have studied the effects of showing and telling on children. « Read the rest of this entry »


The kinds of book-related movies I’m okay with

October 25, 2011 § 7 Comments

As I’ve said before, I’m opposed to books being adapted to film, even when those films turn out great because I think they take the emphasis off of reading. I don’t dislike movies, or even think they are generally inferior to books, I just think that both should be enjoyed and books tend to be more neglected by our society at this point in time.  That said, there are some movies that are book/reading/author inspired that I fully support.

Which brings me to Anonymous (the movie, not the hacker group).

If you neglected to watch the above, it all boils down to « Read the rest of this entry »

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