Tuesday, April 6, 2010

E is for...

Enticing. Readers want to be enticed by your work. If you don't have something to draw the reader in, to entice and excite them, they'll put your book down and that will be that.

Depressing, isn't it? Not really. It just means you have to step up to the challenge. If you want readers, give them what they're asking for. I don't know how many authors out there "People Watch" or how many actually have a grasp on human beings. They're diverse, they're strange, eager people usually concerned with only themselves. Unless they are artistic in nature. If you watch people, learn from them, study their habits, you'll have a better understanding when you hop into the mind of your characters.

No, no I am not talking about stalking people. (By the way, your milk is almost gone and I used the last of the toilet paper...)

I'm talking about sitting down in a crowded public place and watching how people interact. Don't stare, you don't need to be thrown out by security or that burly bouncer at the door with the nice biceps... (coughs)

Just... observe. Most people talk with their hands. Lots of body language. You can get a pretty good idea that the couple in the booth at the restaurant are having issues, because he's staring out the window and she's glaring at his profile. When he speaks, his eyes are downcast. When she says something that is the truth, his head hangs lower. When he gets defensive, he sits back and shakes his head, frowning. When they make up, they're touching, talking in whispers more that a few moments ago and smiling at each other.

There are times, just times mind you, that eavesdropping cannot be avoided. You know what I mean. Those people a few tables over who are shouting to be heard, they want to shock people with their choice of conversational topic. So there are times I eavesdrop. And I laugh. Then I get stared at because I am laughing at them for being obnoxious, immature dorks and quickly look away. Hehe!

So my challenge to you is to watch people a little more. Listen to them without being rude. Tune out if it is extremely private of course. But still observe the body language. It is a great lesson in learning how to put those things to good use in your writing.

And my choice for an E ending today is one of my favorite music groups again: Enya. I love, love Enya. Favorite movie beginning with E? Hmm... Ever After. :D


Jessica Bell said...

I do that all the time! Lol people must think I'm a loony. hehehe. Love this post. Love this post LOVE this post. Btw, was that milk etc comment directed toward your hubbie?

Lisa said...

Love to people watch! I do it all the time without being too obvious, LOL.

You could have at least flushed before you left. How rude! (wink)


Unknown said...

Love the stalker line about the milk and toilet paper. Too funny!

Great post. I watch people but I get embarrassed if I'm noticed, so I tend to do it from afar.

B. Miller said...

Your "stalker line" made me laugh, too. I do this a lot. I feel like a sponge soaking in everything which will be exuded out in the book later.


I loved this, as time goes on with the challenge one must try and keep the others intrested so you will be encouraged to carry on.
Good luck.
don't forget you've no milk or toilet paper ..lol

Mel Chesley said...

Hooray! I'm not the only one who watches people and soaks in my surroundings.

The line about milk and T.P. ... I actually stole that from my daughter.

"I'm not stalking you. By the way you're out of milk." I saw it on a t-shirt too. I want to get one. Oh! And if I can get it soon, I want a t-shirt I found that said, "Be nice to me or you'll end up in my novel."

Raquel Byrnes said...

You know, thats a great pastime I rarely do anymore. With the gestures blogfest coming up, I just may go to the mall to watch people. Thanks!

Kimberly Franklin said...

Haha... you're so funny. I'm a big hand talker. Then when I realize what I'm doing I try not to and then I just look odd. LOL.

Enya... I remember her! Love her music!! :)

Unknown said...

Yes! I love watching people and then chuckling at them and their silliness. Especially when stuck in traffic.

Verification Word Definition: frighte, a fancy way to write fright

Anonymous said...

Yes I'm definately a people watcher. hehe They're so funny! Though I wouldn't like to think anyone is watching me and laughing! :o)

Mel Chesley said...

Hehe I'm sure people get a kick out of watching me. I use my hands to talk all the time too, and I try to have humorous conversations so those sitting near by can have a chuckle. ;)