Writing's Like Dating: Part 1-- The Meet

Hey, everyone! It's been too long since I've touched base with all of you. Since I've last written, I've graduated with my M.A. in English and have had my wisdom teeth removed... what a relief to have that behind me! Hope all of you are settling into your summer routines and enjoying all the sunshine. Today I'm starting a series about writing and dating. This blog will cover the introduction, or the first few chapters.

"So," you might be asking yourself, "what does writing have to do with dating?" Well, surprisingly, a lot, especially if you write romance! For starters, don't give away too much background information too soon. It will freak people out.

I think all authors fight the impulse to info-dump in the first few chapters. After all, we've worked hard crafting these characters, and our readers should enjoy hearing all we know about the main characters, right? Wrong. Giving too much information too soon is boooooooring. So boring, it's akin to sitting down across from a cute guy on a date, only to listen as he rambles on for an hour about how much he misses high school. Can you say red flag? Same thing is true for books. If you're so immersed in your characters' pasts, readers will wonder why you're not showing an equal amount of interest in your characters' futures.

So remember to start off right in the middle of the action, right at the beginning of the story, and integrate the backstory little bits at a time, sort of like glitter eyeshadow. A little goes a long way and takes away from the pop.

Have you ever struggled with info-dumping? Better yet, have you been on one of these kinds of dates? What do you do to avoid it?


  1. Ashley, I love it! This is a great concept, and certainly one we can relate to. I'm not a fiction writer, but I have found myself falling prey to the info-dump mentality in my blogging, revealing too much at once about myself. Bite-size, short, readable pieces - that's been my new goal for a few weeks now. I'm still honing. I look forward to reading your new series and have missed your blogs.

  2. Thanks, Kim! :) It's good to be blogging again, and it's good to hear from you!