I’m pretty sure you’ve heard the old writing adage of “Show, don’t tell.” Maybe it’s used by screenwriters more than novelists, but we writers all know that it’s better if we can show what’s going on. Nobody wants to wade through piles of on-the-nose dialogue (my favorite term for blatant telling) to find the story beneath. We can evoke far more emotion with a well-crafted scene that shows what’s going on.
I’d like to apply this principle to another area of writing. To those of you writing anything that involves any kind of love story, I offer the following question: Can you do it without the kissing?
I say this as I’ve noticed that many writers base an entire character’s perception of a relationship on whether or not he or she has kissed so-and-so. (The Hunger Games, I’m looking directly at you.) It’s to the point where characters can’t make up their minds about whom they truly love until they’ve had a kiss first, and then they’re suddenly sure.
That’s pathetic and lazy. Continue reading Show, Don’t… Kiss?