Have you ever wondered how to add emotional depth to a scene you’ve written? There are a number of techniques you can use to inject emotional depth and drama into a scene. Here are my top four techniques for scene deepening:
1. Ban the bland
Many writers create a bland main character surrounded by quirky, interesting secondary characters. Let your hero be the one who goes through emotional experiences in the scene. Secondary characters should play off/react to the main character’s emotions, not the other way around.
2. Heighten suspense through avoidance
Have your characters dance around an emotionally charged issue. By hinting at trouble to come rather than addressing it directly, you will avoid “on the nose” writing, plus you will create suspense for your readers.
3. One stimulus, two responses
You can inject some energy into a scene by giving your characters contrasting responses to the same situation in a scene. The following example is a bit of a cliche, but think of the veteran cop who doesn’t blink an eye at a gory murder scene, contrasted with his newbie partner who is quietly losing his lunch in the bushes.
4. The human touch
Seed your scenes with small, human moments. Think of the gruff cop who, after he throws his arrestee into the slammer, offers to buy him a bag of chips from the vending machine.
There are dozens of ways to deepen a story scene. Which techniques have you used, and can recommend?