The Wascally, Weasely, and Most Dreaded Modifier Dump

I love to describe. In my two novels, BURNING HEARTS and GOODBYE NOEL in the Sanctuary Point series, I can’t wait to visually portray the landscape, the aroma coming from a kitchen, and the latest 1940s fashion statement. Sometimes I have to put the brakes on. I don’t want the opening words of my next work in progress to sound like this…

“Gertrude rushed into the gothic, Victorian mansion’s dimly lit, heavily book-lined library on shaky legs and clasped her perfectly manicured hands to her pounding heart in an attempt to calm her fraying nerves. She managed to overcome the churning in her stomach and forged ahead past the brocade upholstered Queen Anne chair behind the Chippendale desk strewn with the pages of an ancient occult manuscript. On the parquet floor on the other side of the antique oak desk she spied the body of a middle-aged, balding man in a brocade smoking jacket and a pair of brown suede slippers who had a wooden handled, military stiletto sticking out of his back.”

You see, I have this teensy-weensy affliction. I greatly desire that my reader will know exactly down to the most minute detail what my heroine and hero are feeling, what the room looks like and what aromas might be gracing the atmosphere. So, I must therefore hold myself back, and utterly restrain myself. I have even gone so far as to take an oath to banish adjectives and adverbs from the pages of my manuscript.

Oh, and those dreaded weasel words…will they constantly plague me?  Some people say it seems likely that one “many” is too many in a chapter, but it also could be argued that it could be way too few except on those very rare occasions when it is obviously needed to make the author’s point. Of course unless the author is obfuscating by using an abundance of abstract words that might tend to obscure the meaning rather than elucidate the author’s point for the reader.

And so, dear and gentle reader, I hope this clarifies everything for you.

For an example of my writing when I get it right, you might try…

http://goo.gl/8KpQ3

 

 

 

 

 

http://goo.gl/EB9s5

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About NikeChillemi

Nike Chillemi has been called a crime fictionista due to her passion for crime fiction. She writes literature that reads like pulp fiction. She likes her bad guys really bad, and her good guys smarter and better. She is the founder and chair of the Grace Awards, a member of ACFW. She has judged numerous literary awards including the Grace Awards, Carol Awards, Inspy Awards, and the Eric Hoffer Awards. View all posts by NikeChillemi

7 responses to “The Wascally, Weasely, and Most Dreaded Modifier Dump

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