Essential for every book, description sets the stage. Using the senses, the author builds characters and a world within our heads. Surely everyone knows the importance of those bits of information.
Apparently not all, I ran into a few writers (unpublished) who believed that dialogue was whatwriting is all about. They wanted to skip past all of the description and get straight to the talking. Their logic being that was how they read books and so that is how they wished to write their books.
Don’t misunderstand me. I love dialogue. A well written dialogue between characters brings a special life to any book. The witty beats between speakers as they feed off of each other’s energy, provoking and exhilarating, thrills me every time. However, description is essential too.
To be honest, the suggestion ofskipping the description to read only the dialogue horrified me. By doing so, one would miss so much.
How do you envision the hero without at least one or two references to his appearance? The heroine could be self-conscious about her teeth and a reader would never know the source of her discomfort without some description. Think of all the shades of meaning and emotion communicated by touch or movement lost if the reader skipped the descriptions.
Words spoken in a vacuum are hard to interpret.So much meaning would be lost because we cannot see what is in the author’s mind, but not on the page.
I personally refuse to skip description while reading and when writing. The author wrote it for a purpose and since she /he is telling the story, I shall trust it was put there for a purpose.
How do you feel about descriptions in novels?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Rachel Rossano, authoress of The Mercenary’s Marriage, buries herself in books between diapers, bottles, and preschool transportation for her three little ones. Her books are available on Amazon and Smashwords.
She blogs (http://rachel-rossano.blogspot.com) and keeps her fans up to date on her current activities on her Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Rachel-Rossanos-Rambles/240421865704). You can also visit her website (http://anavrea.webs.com).