Show, Don’t Tell

One of the many things I admire about writing is description. I admire writers who are able to paint pictures through their words. They show, they do not tell.

Whenever I am asked to read another person’s piece of writing the first thing that pops into my head is the phrase “make sure to show, not tell.” This advice has been drilled into my head ever since I can remember, and in turn I try to drill it into as many other heads as I can. However, although I preach these words of wisdom, I am not always one to initially follow them. Before I start any piece of writing I remind myself to show, not tell. But like clock work I finish writing my piece, only to go back and realize that there are so many places that I could have shown and not told. Showing, not telling, is a skill. Although I have not yet mastered it, I try my best to recognize it and look out for it when reviewing others’ and my own writing. Description develops writing; it enhances the picture in a reader’s mind. I hope that over time I will become better at showing. Until then I will still preach it to my peers, even if I haven’t mastered it yet.

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