I had to share Ramona’s post with y’all. As my critique partners would attest, disembodiment is a pet peeve of mine. I find it creepy when eyeballs zoom across rooms on their own.
My first drafts are full of these maladies, but with the help of excellent tips like these, they get better.
The body is a temple, a key to the soul. In fiction, a character’s body can reveal emotion and habits, but this can go awry. Below are seven body function that creep into writing in clichéd, ineffective, and colorless ways and weaken your prose.
Respiratory Problems: Does your character take a breath before he performs a mundane activity, such as make a phone call, answer a question, or walk out the door? Does she release a breath she’s been holding, but never knew she was holding it? Does she take a deep breath before a more stressful activity, as if you are telling the reader, “Yes, she’s going to run into live gunfire, but she took a deep breath, so don’t worry, she’ll be okay!” Deep breaths are not force fields, and breathing is not a telling activity. The only time breathing is interesting is when a character stops.
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