writing · Writing Diaries

On Writing #2: We’re Still Talking About Info-Dumping

So I sort of finished the first chapter of The Fire Within, my current W.I.P. and…

flail

I am not even joking. The chapter felt like the most difficult thing I have written in ever and you guys, I am old so that is a long while.

You see, with The Fire Within I have to establish the world (have I already said this? Let me go check) (no I haven’t, let’s continue) in which the story is set before I can tell the story. It’s the best way (I know) to give the story as much weight and drama it deserves.

But let me tell you the things I discovered:

  • Not info-dumping while giving information is possible.
  • Not info-dumping while giving is possible and extremely ‘will make you throw up blood’ difficult.

I am not certain I have it down, to be completely honest.

I shall give you an example.

First Draft: The City of Noor never sleeps. Located on the border between the forest and the desert, being the nation’s capital, and being a profitable stop on the Silk Road makes the City of Noor the busiest place in the nation.

(Look, I know this is terrible. But it’s the dirty draft so I am allowed!)

Second Draft: The City of Noor never sleeps. Being one of the more profitable stops on the Silk Road means a steady stream of caravans enters or leaves the city at all times of the day or night. With the merchants come goods to be traded and people who either want to visit the City of the Djinn or who want to live here. Dark-skinned Bayars dressed in stately robes jostle for space on the same sidewalk that the lighter-skinned Hanguk people do.

(This needs more work but it will do for the moment.)

I was so frustrated by my lack of progress on this chapter that I finally grabbed a notebook and wrote each sentence on one line and attempted to unwrap whatever felt like info-dumping in ways that would make the world seem more alive than it would otherwise.

You might be tempted to cry tears of blood but please refrain as it is difficult to see the screen through blood….which is also difficult to clean up later.

Happy writing.

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4 thoughts on “On Writing #2: We’re Still Talking About Info-Dumping

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