Rooting out the Show Verses Tell

Have you ever read a manuscript that was JAM PACKED LOADED with tell sequences?

Was it your own?  Would you admit to it if it was?

Even bigger question:  Do you even know what I am talking about?  (I admit, I didn’t when I started out)

There are actually people out there querying novels that are 80% tell and are wondering why they are getting rejections.

Do you know the mistake they made (other than writing a “telly” story)?  They tried to skip the Beta Read process.

If you are querying now, and the only people who’ve read your story are people who know you, you should really consider trying to find a beta partner… or two… or five.

I admit, I was totally convinced my novel was perfect and ready for publication.  When I went through the beta read process I found out it was full of tell sequences and I didn’t even know it.  You know what?  They were really easy to fix (for the most part).

All I needed, was someone to point out to me that they were there.

Don’t walk… run to find yourself a good beta reader, and get ready to have a thick skin too.

You might be surprised about what they find.

2 responses to “Rooting out the Show Verses Tell

  1. Tee Hee. I remember the days when you thought this little angel had horns growing out of her head…. But, yes, that’s what you need in a beta partner. It’s the ones that you can trust to tell you the truth that you want to hang on to. Your novel is almost “there” mine will be right along side it soon.

  2. Amen! I have said this over and over in my local writer’s meetings, in my own blog, anywhere I can. Beta readers are worth a gazillion times their weight in gold. I have several but there is one who has been an angel to me. She’s cheered me on when I wanted to give up and has let me have an ear full when a passage just didn’t ring true or right or I left my characters behind for some strange voice not theirs. Because of my beta readers, and more importantly my angel beta reader, my novel is under serious consideration with a publisher. The publisher wants changes. I’m willing to make them.

    Two years ago, it was hard to take criticism. It’s difficult to have others look at your baby and not love it as much as you do. But thank the heavens for my beta readers’ blatant honesty and sometimes harsh words. They have made my novel stronger, better, and I developed a thick rhino skin.

    It’s exciting being considered by a publisher and I owe it all to my beta readers, especially my angel. I hope she knows I’m right there with her, egging her on, because she has an awesome novel that the world is going to love. A great friendship has been forged and I will be in her debt forever.