The Devil Is In The Details

~ I always liked that phrase, "The devil is in the details". To me, it somehow sounds both educational and menacing. What it's meant to imply is that the details of any situation are where it gets the most problematic. While this may be true for a great number of things, I find it to be mostly the opposite when it comes to writing. 


I say "mostly" because a story with a very heavy load of plot and/or character details leads to an overly complex writing experience, and an overly complex read. Let me just say, as a reader, I love books that have some level of complexity to them, but not too much. For me, there's a tricky balancing act going on there, which ties back to my original point. When I first started writing, I caught myself trying to cut to the chase. I wanted to keep the plot moving as quickly as possible. Many readers will tell you that they love a plot that keeps a fast pace. What I found though, is that skipping out on a lot of detail in the interest of plot speed leads to a less immersive story, and that leads to readers not putting any emotional investment in the story or the characters. Don't get me wrong, I do keep plots moving quickly (as readers of my first novel, In The Dark will attest to), but it's important to keep enough detail planted along the way to build real character personalities and real environments around them. In writing, it's not a bad thing that the devil is in the details. It just means that he likes to hide there until it's time to come out. ...and in my next book, Lies That Bind, he's coming.

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