META: Writing Good Action [was: Re: [LNH/ACRA] Onion Lad #8]

Arthur Spitzer arspitzer at
Wed Jun 7 21:06:41 PDT 2006

in article 1149738846.041169.185000 at,
martinphipps2 at at martinphipps2 at wrote on 6/7/06 8:54 PM:

> Tom Russell wrote:
>> I ask, not only on behalf of my fellow writers but also for myself
>> (action scenes never being my strong point), what makes for a good
>> prose action sequence?
> That's difficult.  If it is a conversation you are describing then, of
> course, you just use dialogue.  If it is a static scene then you can
> take your time to establish it, assuming that this is something the
> reader cares about.  But for an action scene you don't want to use too
> much description because you don't have a lot of control over how the
> reader reads the story.  Will the reader get up to go to the bathroom
> during the action scene?

I believe you should ideally try to write stories that are so compelling
that the reader would rather pee in (his/her) pants than get up to go to
the bathroom.

Arthur "Ideally" Spitzer

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