A shift is needed…

NaNoWriMo Day 13: Chase!

So I learned something today as I was writing; I don’t really know how to write a chase scene.  I had the whole thing in my head, but when I sat down to put it on the page, it didn’t look the same.  Now, I don’t think what I wrote was complete crap, but at the same time it wasn’t exactly a full blown epic chase either.  My main characters were getting shot at, and they had to find a crafty way to get out of the room while avoiding the window so they wouldn’t get sniped.  Then they had to escape the building and get out of the town they were in.  Easier said than it is to write.

Sometimes I think to myself, “I’m going to write this super exciting chase, and it’s going to be awesome, and anyone who reads it will be on the edge of their seats.”  But when it’s all said and done, I look at it and say, “Yeah, I don’t know how to make this as exciting as it is in my head.”

Now, it’s not all action scenes that I have trouble writing, I find that I’m pretty okay with fight scenes and direct one-on-one (or group for that matter) confrontation.  It’s chase scenes that I have trouble with, where the protagonist (or someone else) is running from something that is after them.  I can’t seem to get my fingers around the nuances of how to write a character’s escape attempt while facing possible capture or death.

I think this is something I can improve on in my writing, so I’m going to look at my seemingly inability to write a good chase as a way to learn, grow, and hone my craft.

For any writers who read my blog, answer this: What do you do to make a good chase scene?  Any tips?

Current word count for Written in Silence: 37,044/50,000!

Until the morning sun rises,

Andrew Ronzino, AKA Superman

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Comments on: "NaNoWriMo Day 13: Chase!" (4)

  1. Not only am I terrible at writing action, I also have no patience for things I am bad at. My action scenes during nano end up like this: (then the dragon comes and eats the guy and the girl is wounded on her left shoulder but the others finally make it to safety).

    Not so good for the word count, but it keeps me from stalling, momentum-wise and I can move on to something I enjoy more. I think action scenes are particularly difficult because in your mind, you think so much more quickly than you can type, so the detail doesn’t make it to the page. Those are the scenes to later dedicate more time to really visualizing. So don’t worry – a few rounds of editing should help a lot.

    You know, if you can find the patience for it, that is. :)

  2. Amen to everything Adrianne just said. Seriously, Andrew, give yourself a break!! This is NaNo, where pantsters reign :). I had a couple of sections as well where I wrote a sentence or two about what happened (or wrote “Months passed”). I ended up going back to a couple of those places when I got stuck at the end of my novel and was able to add in the scenes I decided should be there. It can be a bit of a fight but that’s the nature of the beast.

    Otherwise, if you are determined to get the scene right, il maybe try acting out the scene. It has helped me in the past- literally stand up and pretend you are Michael, dodging the bullets. That may give you enough interaction with your ideas that the words will flow more freely. Just keep moving forward- you are doing a great job!!

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