Forums › Fiction › General Writing Discussions › Scribblers' Station #1
- This topic has 64 replies, 15 voices, and was last updated 4 years, 9 months ago by DragonGeek.
May 29, 2018 at 12:22 pm #36710DragonGeek@dragongeek
@r-m-archer I’m on a website where a bunch of amateur writers post their work online. One of those people is the absolute KING of fight scenes (not of grammar, but that’s a topi for another time). Eventually I decided to try to learn from him. This is what I got:
-Know each character’s fighting style. Let’s say you have a world where magic is common and your characters are all mages–maybe one of them has a lot of magical power, to the point where they can just overwhelm their opposition with both incredibly powerful spells and huge, huge fleets of smaller spells. One of them prefers to go largely defensive and wait for an opportunity to strike with a small but deadly spell. One of them creates illusions to make their enemies attack something other than themselves. Another stays at a distance and uses spells that travel really far, while their enemies can’t reach them. And so on.
-Then figure out how long you want to spend on the fight scene. If it’s a short one, or takes place between only two (or only a few) people, you might be able to go for a blow-by-blow account. Read the Ranger’s Apprentice series to see some excellent examples of how to do that–the fights always feel really alive, and they never seem to drag on too long, even though they describe every. single. move. On the other hand, if it’s a big battle between two armies, blow-by-blow isn’t really feasible. You can describe that one with the general flow of the armies and large strategies (see Helm’s Deep or the Pelenor Fields from Lord of the Rings), or use the POV of someone in the battle to get a limited, but vivid description (like the Battle of Five Armies in the Hobbit, where everything [if I recall correctly] happens from Bilbo’s view). The person I prefer, though, uses a mixture. They give a blow-by-blow for the first few minutes of the fight, usually somewhere in between 4 and 12 moves. Then they sort of zoom out and describe the overall strategies and fighting styles of each member, before zooming back in to show the end of the fight. It works really well–the fights are fun and engaging without feeling like they drag on forever or show too many details.
Wow, that came out long. I hope it helps!
Fandoms: Narnia, LotR, Harry Potter, Marvel, MLP, Ranger's Apprentice, probably everything elseMay 29, 2018 at 12:28 pm #36712R.M. Archer@r-m-archer
@dragongeek I’ll have to keep these in mind. They’re short sparring matches so I’m planning on doing blow-by-blow (which is what’s giving me issues, because I don’t feel like I have a particularly great handle on how fighting actually works and I have to try not to be repetitive), but I’ll definitely try to figure out the characters’ fighting styles and apply that. 🙂 Thanks!
Speculative fiction author. Mythology nerd. Worldbuilding enthusiast. Singer. Fan of classic literature.June 1, 2018 at 10:43 am #37322Gabrielle Pollack@gabriellepollack
@r-m-archer Ah! I didn’t see that you replied till now. Sorry I missed you 🙁
@scribbles My apologies for the late reply. 🙂 It’s not going too shabby. I can’t remember what I was working on. XD Thanks for asking. 🙂June 2, 2018 at 12:20 am #37435Rachel Rogers@scribbles
@gabriellepollack No worries! I’m glad it’s going well in general, even if the specifics have faded from memory. XD
Ambiverted INFP. Scribbles all the words. Names the plant friends. Secretly Edna the Piguirrel.June 4, 2018 at 2:01 pm #37765DragonGeek@dragongeek
Working on fight scenes of my own now. Trying to use the same advice I gave Archer. Anybody else on?
Fandoms: Narnia, LotR, Harry Potter, Marvel, MLP, Ranger's Apprentice, probably everything else
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