Event report

Conference 2011 - Getting emotion on the page

Report published 23 September 2011

Fiona Harper: Getting Emotion on the Page…and then keeping it there.

Our aim is to use our writing toolkit to elicit the right level of the right emotion at the right time.

Universal emotion
- A unique story world full of familiar emotions.
- Identify and tap into the universal emotion in your story.
- Universal does not mean generic

Characters you know…
- Readers want believable, authentic, consistent characters!
- Dig deep and then build your characters from the inside out.
- Tailor-made emotional responses.

  …that grow
- Know the emotional journey your characters are going to go on.
- Complete the character arc! Don’t leave your characters half-cooked.
- Challenge who your character thinks they are!

The emotion is in the detail
- Details add richness.
- Choose wisely.
- Make sure the details you have included don’t work against the mood.

Set it up!
- Character traits and reactions.
- Don’t slow the pace by stopping to explain.
- Setting up turning points.
- Setting up the romance.
- Setting up a satisfying ending.

What lies beneath - Using subtext:
- Why?
- When?
- How?

Don’t pull the plug yourself!  With:
- OTT emotion
- Too much too soon.
- Emotional Ping-Pong.
- Emotional incontinence.
- Why? Why? Why?

Written by RayAnne Lutener

It's a fact

The RNA's first president Denise Robins wrote more than 180 books. The second, Mary Burchell wrote 110. Our third President, Diane Pearson has six so far. Current president Katie Fforde has 19 and she's still writing.