Here’s the structure of a scene tends to go:

  • Beginning
  • Middle
  • Ending

Tell the reader everything they need to know for that scene in the beginning of that scene, unless the information spoils a plot twist or a reveal somewhere in the middle.  Do not tell the reader anything they don’t need to know for that scene.  Like a two-year-old’s, a reader’s expectations should be managed.

You can tell them more things in the scene, in dialogue, in backstory, etc.  That’s fine.  Just don’t save the information until after the reader needs to know.  It’s too late.  The toddler is in the middle of the grocery store screaming; the reader puts the book down.

The most important thing you can tell the reader is information that will lead to the reader wanting to spend more time with the characters, in that world.

Not action.  Like…any…action.  Your characters may pick their noses.  That’s about it.  They may not act or react to any events.

That goes in the middle.

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