Action is more than superhero fights, car chases, and bombs that must be disarmed within 20 seconds. It may actually be enough for your main character to get up from the kitchen chair and an action scene is underway, and then anything can happen. Anders Farer shows how to make it both nerve-wracking and understandable.
If you are Book Writing these tips keep in mind. Things are differently difficult to write about. It can be difficult to write about emotions because they are difficult to imagine. Or about a mass murder because you actually lack some industry knowledge. This author does not really have those problems but thinks that action – fast-paced events – is the most difficult to write about. Especially if the processes involve many people. I would argue that all writers have that problem to varying degrees. Some lose the concept when thirty ninjas fight ninjas outside a high-rise building. Others cannot even let their characters get up from the heartfelt conversation at the kitchen table without it getting a little messy. Regardless of the situation, writers often lose sight of where people are and whether they are sitting or standing, and what is important in the scene. It will either be an endless description of different body parts’ path through the room or things just happen without you understanding how. (Note that sometimes there may be a point where no one understands what is happening, more on this later.)
BEING ABLE TO DESCRIBE
movements and events are as important as keeping order in internal monologues and driving forces. You who immediately shoot this text away from you and think that you at least do not write about superheroes; hang on. These arguments force you to look up from the navel and into the room. It can benefit your writing in many ways.
That your scenes feel alive can be good even if you do not write suspense novels, and it can actually be the case that the most difficult thing you can portray is a ball or a larger mingling. (Field battles are also difficult, but armies have a built-in pursuit of order and logic that the average book fair mingles lacks.) Why? Because there are people everywhere and lots of things happen at the same time and everyone is easily packed and walks around talking in each other’s mouths.
HOW DO YOU DESCRIBE THIS CHAOS?
Do you choose to portray it from a bird’s eye view like those who refer to Nobel parties on television? There is the Queen and there is the Prime Minister and there comes the dessert. Or do you choose to portray everything from the perspective of a special character? Notice how different your depiction will be depending on what perspective we see it from.
Let’s say that there’s a ball at the castle: Do we follow it together with the waitress Svetlana who barely speaks Swedish and even less knows who all these packed, unpleasant people are? Or do we follow it from a position at the top of the food chain? Mighty Mona looks out over her party in her palace and knows exactly who everyone is or is not. Who lies with whom, who hates each other and who can be bought. She is power. For Svetlana, everything is messy and difficult to understand and there are many we understand that she misses or misinterprets. Mona has an iron check. She is in her right element.
TRY WRITING A SNIPPET
About the same party from the perspective of two different people. If not Mona and Svetlana, then some you can come up with yourself. If not at the castle, then at a sloppy Viking banquet where the men laugh as loudly as they always do at sloppy Viking banquets. And the next time you are at a ball or mingle or a rich Viking banquet, think about how you perceive the scene. In what order do you bring things in? What people or objects are you watching over? Which ones do you ignore and which ones make you nervous? Is the place familiar or strange?
Walkthrough the hall. Intercept parts of conversations and record what’s happening. Greet people you at least think you know. What are the interests of your character? Does he or she look at clothes or celebrities? Is it a hurry to the bar and the free drinks? Does she want to be there? Or is her stomach a lump of nerves because she really hates being among people in this way?
V D HAVE THIS WITH ACTION TO DO?
All Skyscrapers do not have to be attacked by giant lizards and explode for a lot to happen in a scene. The only thing that possibly makes the skyscraper and the giant lizard more complicated to write about is that the situation is three-dimensional in a different way than in the normal party room. On the other hand, everyone who sees the scene will stare at the giant lizard and ignore everything else, which actually makes that scene easier to write.
It’s all about movement and what we have time and want to perceive while we move. Imagine that you are rushing around in the mingling in search of the love of your life that you know is there somewhere, and all you want to say is “sorry, my dear”. How do you describe it? How does your character view the people in the room?
If you instead write about a fashion writer who has already gotten quite drunk when he remembers that he promised his editor to name the evening’s three best and three worst dressed. How is it looked then? And where can that dress be as our writer saw a while ago? The floral? Away at the bar?
NOW IMAGINE IF something really unexpected happens. Let’s say that about every twenty-fifth party participant at the same time realizes that it is a full moon and that it is time to wolf a little. (Werewolves are, as everyone knows, lousy at keeping order on weekdays. The last thing they say before they start howling is often “but it Thursday only tomorrow?”) All of a sudden we have crazy werewolves everywhere and NOW IT’S ACTION!!!
The question now is how do you portray this?
Attempt. The first question is probably whether the event itself is visible from your place or if “someone howled away at the bar. Roared in pain. ”
The next question you need to answer is whether people understand what is happening. It is called “Werewolves! Evacuate the room! ” And “Can anyone call the game warden?” or do people stand and stare at the horrific transformations without understanding what is happening? Do they even get scared? Maybe they think they have ended up in some kind of new circus show and at any time Anna Odell will come driving with a chainsaw in full swing. ” Mighty Mona at least knows how to speed up a party.
Sit at the typewriter now. How do you describe it? The big werewolf outbreak in the Blue Hall in 2015. What happened? You who were there can tell. You have three sides to you.
A HOT TIP
when you start with a text like this is to make sure things start happening right away. You have three sides to you. If you establish the environment and characters in two pages and then release the werewolves on the last page, I want to categorically say that you are doing wrong.
If you start your text in one of the following ways, you are more right:
Mrs. Patberg thanked me for the dance, and let me kiss her hand. Then she set off towards the bar. She managed three steps before she doubled over with a guttural roar. In front of me and the other visitors at the ball, she underwent a horrific transformation. ”
“When Sabina heard the first roars, she thought ‘at my wedding, you bastards!’ Then she took the revolver with silver bullets out of her purse. The hairy aces would not be allowed to ruin her party. ”
“But it’s probably Thursday only tomorrow,” Bengt thought the second before the pain made him throw himself straight on the floor and halfway under a serving trolley. The last thing his human brain thought was ‘not in this shirt!!!’ ”
IT IS IMPORTANT TO KEEP IN MIND
Your action scenes who is telling. If you choose to refer to what is happening, so to speak, from the top of the roof, the story will be in a way. There you have the advantage of being able to summarize and explain in a way you cannot if you choose to only follow one person. “There were six wolves at the party when the moon broke through the clouds. Three were on the dance floor, two were standing at the bar and one was vomiting on the toilet. They reacted at the same time. Although none of them saw the moon, they all felt that pressure over their chests. ”