Description prescription

I write prose as well as drama.  Writing is difficult.  Going from writing drama to prose is difficult in its own peculiar way.  For years I’ve been receiving feedback on my (lack of) description from other prose writers.  I’ve been writing for long enough to know how vital it is to get input from gifted, experienced writers.  I’m lucky to have found those gifted, experienced writers.  I respect those gifted, experienced writers.  But as someone who has written a lot of drama, I sometimes want to throw down my sheaf of printed prose and exclaim, ‘For God’s sake!  Why do you need to know what all this looks like?  Haven’t you seen it on television?’ 

I am now thinking of the world in terms of prose; though my focus is often drawn back to action and dialogue.  With BOLDtext, I’m still writing theatre, in spite of the fact that I’m currently working on a novel.  Doing both is a bit like that thing where you circle your head and pat your tummy at the same time.  

One book I love is Margaret Atwood’s collection of short pieces, ‘The Tent’.  Atwood’s (very) short story ‘The Bottle’ could be described as a prose story entirely composed of dialogue.  So daring, so experimental.  But I know enough to know that I’m not ready to scale those lofty heights of originality just yet.  I’ve still got a lot of describing to do… Helen Kelly

%d bloggers like this: