Aug 17

Details

Photo 28I’ve always thought that getting on a horse was a no-brainer. There’s a saddle, you put it on, make sure not to step in poop, put your foot in the stirrups, grab the reins, kick your heels into the sides of the horse, and then hold on for dear life.

That was, of course, before I took horseback riding lessons.

Saturday morning was my second lesson, and I feel like maybe I’m getting a bit better now…or at least my inner thighs aren’t in a constant state of pain anymore…so that has to be a good sign.

Anyway, I’ve learned in my two lessons that much of riding horses has to do with the details. Pelvis forward, loose hips, heels down, back straight, legs wrapped around the body, subtle movements with your feet, gentleness with the reins, and so many more that I’ve already forgotten about.

But it’s all in the details.

And that is what wonderful, engaging writing is like. And for  me at least, the details of a story are what separates great writing from amazing writing.

The details.

Details added that give us insight into a character, a setting, a theme, a moment, an emotion.

For instance: your main character eats breakfast. Sometimes that’s enough. But sometimes adding little details like: what specifically did she have? Does she always eat the same thing and if so why? Is it a special breakfast? Describe it. Who makes it for her, or does she make it herself? what does the food look like through her eyes? can open up the writing and character and story so much more that you find yourself full engaged.

And that is our job as writers, and as human beings. To write and live and move and laugh and cry our way through life fully engaged in the stories playing around us.

To take notice of the details and subtlities in life.

One Response to “Details”

  • Melanie says:

    I remember when I started taking riding lessons. I was so ecstatic to actually be on a horse. I was nine, so my thighs didn’t hurt so badly.

    Details are really important. I always have a hard time finding just the right amount of details between too little and too much.

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