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  • Amy Shannon

The written and unwritten ... an author's tale

As a writer and an author, I found that it is not uncommon

for me to write stories where there are plot points that may be "unwritten." Yes, when we write it is not always necessary to write every single detail. We want to leave some things to the imagination of the reader, and some things are there with details in the words, but left unwritten. It's how storytellers gain intrigue, add thrilling elements, and sometimes leave little clues to what comes next. Yes, the unwritten helps tell the story. I believe this is a very important point.

However, there are times when we are writing our story, usually the first or second draft, when we omit to write what is in our head or what we were thinking in a situation, and it can leave the reader confused. We want the reader to see into our imagination, take a journey with the characters, try to solve the mystery of the story, believe in the unexpected, but we can't always expect the reader to "read our mind."

I've done this myself. I've written a story, edited it, rewritten the story, reread it so many times I couldn't count, and because I knew what was in my head when I wrote it, but I didn't put it on paper, I expected anyone to read it to also "know what I meant." It is not always easy to find that thought that should've been written down, but wasn't. These are things that may not be easy to find, and we may even argue with our editor or beta reader that some things are better left unwritten. Yes, some are, but some things must be written to for our readers to follow our story, and to want to read another one.

Just a thought.


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