How do I deal with flat writing that lacks enough details and kind of moves the plot along too quickly? I’m writing in first person, present tense and my writing comes out really fast paced (as it goes with present tense) but I feel like it lacks…meat, metaphorically speaking. How can I fatten it up without taking away from the action sequence?


Write through it first and then go back to pick out the places that seem to be going too fast. Here are some reasons for why they seem rushed:

  • Word Choice: Your word choice determines the way a sentence flows by itself and how it flows with other sentences. If a section of your writing seems too fast, rewrite it and rearrange it until is sounds right.
  • Not Enough Something: If you look at a scene that is much shorter than you thought it would be, you might be missing detail or story. You can add more to the story by introduce subplots, adding in a little bit more conflict, or adding something else that puts more space between the beginning and the end. For tips on detail, go through the description tag on the tags page.
  • Pacing: Your pacing is probably off. This goes back to the above points. If you need help with pacing, go through the pacing tag on the tags page.
  • No Down Time: You need some down time in a story. The action scenes can go fast, but after that something should slow the story. The reader needs time between fast paced scenes to wrap their head around what had just happened, but this doesn’t mean it should be a pattern of fast-slow-fast-slow. Mix it up. Entire chapters or scenes shouldn’t be fast or slow. They can be a combination. There can be little moments of quiet in an action scene where you can catch up on everything that happened within the narration and where you can put in more detail about the world around your character.

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