On with the Show

Presenter: Gerard Collins
Sunday, May 23, 2021
Start time: 2:00 pm AST
End time: 5:00 pm AST (final hour reserved for Q & A/discussion)

You’ve heard it over and over: show, don’t tell. In fact, the ability to “show” instead of just telling separates mediocre writing from good, and good from the great.

Tell us something, and we might believe you. Show us, and we’ll believe in your characters. Instead of telling us who they are, show us what they do, how they behave, and how they talk.

In writing fiction or nonfiction, the best way to make us care about your characters and story is through precise diction, specific detail, and purposeful dialogue. Make us feel, understand, fear, and want. Make us sigh or smile when your protagonist and antagonist get what they deserve.

In this interactive workshop, we’ll examine written examples of both showing and telling, discuss when it’s time for one or the other, and learn how to engage readers. While there’s a time to summarize, it’s usually better to dramatize.


Presenter Bio:

Gerard Collins is a Newfoundland writer who lives in southern New Brunswick. His first novel, Finton Moon, was nominated for the International Dublin Literary Award, Sunburst Award, the NL Heritage and History Award, and won the Percy Janes First Novel Award. In 2019, he turned the Finton Moon experience into a multimedia art exhibition, The Book That Wrote Itself.

Gerard’s short story collection, Moonlight Sketches, won the NL Book Award, and his stories have been published in journals and anthologies, adapted for radio, and taught in university. His latest novel, The Hush Sisters, was published by Breakwater Books in 2020.

A lecturer at Memorial University for two decades, Gerard has a Ph.D. in Gothic literature. He is an experienced leader of writing retreats and workshops in Canada, the United States, and Europe.

Gerard lives in a cottage beside a lake where he mentors talented emerging writers, teaches university by distance, and writes. He is currently working on everything.

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