It's the Little Details

Monday, April 20, 2009

I was working on an article for a client the other day, when it dawned on me exactly what the client was looking for. The client wanted explicit details about a particular product that I had never used before. They wanted me to create a special story based article where the item was being used and how. Well, I was a bit dumb founded to be honest. To create a story based around a product that I had never used in my life.

Details, it came to me, it is all about the details. What does this product do? How is it used in every day life? What is the product made of? Most importantly, how would I incorporate it into my every day life.

So, alas, my pursuit began to come up with the ultimate story on a product I had never used. For hours I spent researching the item getting as much information as I possibly could about it, to include when the product was first manufactured.

After many hours of research, a pounding head, my story/article was complete. I went into the slightest detail of using a toothbrush and the product to clean grout and how well it worked and how much dirt it removed from the sink, the shine that was left behind. But, even with those simple details, I was able to convey to the readers what it could do.

When we are writing our wonderful stories, with out the simplest of details, the story could be looked at as boring or just like the rest. Think about the details of an apple. What kind of an apple is it? Is the color red, green, yellow? Is the flavor sweet, tart, sour? Is the apple grainy when you bite into it? These details are what you want to give to your reader so that they can experience with your characters what that apple tastes like how it feels on the tongue, they can imagine that they are biting into that apple with the character.

How about that cup of coffee you drank this morning, how did it taste? Was it bitter from sitting all morning? Was it too sweet because you loaded it in sugar?

Simple details really make the story pop and come to life for the readers. So if you plan on making your characters do some actions, think about the actions and how they are performed. Make yourself a notebook on different actions that you may want to add to your story lines or articles, this will help keep specific details fresh and at hand. This is great if you are like the many of us that suffer from "The Mommy Brain".

Happy Writing!


LuAnn said...

It is often difficult to write about a product you know nothing about. It can be the same way with an organization. I find myself doing quite a bit of research along that line.

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