Key Tips on How to Improve Your Story Pacing

Flynn Hannan
Writers Republic
Published in
4 min readMar 1

--

When it comes to writing a story, a key aspect of the process is the pacing. This usually refers to the speed with which your story unfolds. This includes the rhythm and flow of your plot. If your pacing is not efficient, your story may become either go too slow or too fast.

It may even sound awkward in the long run. As a whole, you should make sure your pacing is as on point as possible. Here are key tips on how to improve your story pacing.

1. Mix up your sentence length

Another effective way to improve your story pacing, is to mix up your sentence length. Your use of sentence length will usually depend on the circumstances. For example, you are writing an action scene. You will most likely want to write in shorter and choppier sentences to speed up the pace of your writing.

This will create a sense of urgency that will keep your readers excited to know what happens next. On the other hand, if you want to write in greater detail, your sentences could be longer. This creates a more languid pace where your readers will be able to sit back and enjoy the details.

2. Don’t share too much information all at once

If you want your pacing to be efficient, it is important that you don’t share too much information all at once. The act of sharing too much information at a single instance is called an information dump, and this is quite annoying for a lot of readers.

Remember that your readers cannot absorb all the information in one go. This will just end up confusing them and forgetting information that should have intrigued them in the long run. If you are going to divulge information to your readers, it is a good idea to scatter them out throughout your story.

3. Details are key

While you should not share too much information all at once, this does not mean that you can’t be detailed in your writing. In a way, details are perfect for slowing down the pace of your writing. Detailed writing is also a great way to draw your readers into the story.

By adding parts in your story where you talk about the key details of a character or a setting, you are making your story more intriguing in the long run.

If you are going to write the details in your story, you should not overdo it. Don’t make the details too long, because it could make your writing feel pedantic or boring.

4. Add introspective scenes to your writing

A great way to influence the pace of your writing, is to use introspective scenes. This scenes usually take place in the mind of your characters. It allows your readers to look into the thoughts of your characters, and gives a clearer picture of his or her motivations and actions. Introspective scenes are also a great way to slow down your writing pace.

5. Don’t be afraid to weed out unnecessary elements in your writing

After each of your writing sessions, it is a good idea to weed out the unnecessary elements in your writing. These elements could be anything. An unnecessary character, setting, or an overly long description.

When it comes to perfecting your story’s pacing, you should be efficient. Anything that does not really contribute to your story should be considered unnecessary and speedily taken out. This will ensure that your writing is as trim and effective as possible.

6. Read your work out loud

When it comes to making your pacing efficient, it is important that you read your work out loud. As you read your work, you may feel that your work is ok.

This is a common mistake that many writers tend to make. What could sound good to you, may sound slow or clunky to other writers. If you want to know what your work actually sounds like, take the time to read your work out loud after every writing session. This will allow you to weed out unnecessary wordplay in your work.

7. Get feedback for your work

While you should be confident in your writing’s pacing, it could never be too perfect. If you have the time, and some helpful writer friends, it is always a good idea to have them read your work. This will allow them to spot glaring issues with your pacing.

After getting their feedback, you should implement them into your work. Rewriting certain aspects of your work may seem like tedious work, but these changes will improve your pacing exponentially.

Conclusion

If you want your story to be as well executed as possible, it is important that your pacing is as efficient as possible. The better your pacing, the better your story will be. With these tips, you’ll be able to convey your story in the most effective way possible.

--

--

Flynn Hannan
Writers Republic

Bibliophile , Senior Indie Editor at Writers Republic