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December 29, 2012
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Are you good at writing action scenes?

:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012
I've recently realized that I am not, in fact, superb at writing action :P by action here I mean chase scenes and guns and duels and fights and what not.

How do you go about writing action scenes? Are you good at it? What steps are you taking to improve?

etc.
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:iconsaraalaska:
SaraAlaska Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
People say I'm pretty good with action scenes in my books. I've won second place in a action catogory in a contest once on the first draft of one of my books. lol I usually can picture things in my head pretty good like a movie, for fighting scenes I just put in music and go. Mostly Bad Reputation by Joan Jet because it's got a good action kind of beat to it. :)
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:iconneomerlin:
neomerlin Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2013  Student Writer
I tend to think I am pretty good at it, actually. Sometimes I go so far as to think it has or is becoming one of my strengths as a writer. Particularly with fights. What helped me?

Learning to fight.

I think that all the time I've spent, in my life, studying martial arts has done a lot for helping me write fight scenes. It gives me theoretical knowledge and practical experience to apply. Also, studying how others write action scenes is helpful. That should be obvious. I'm less good at guns and cars because I don't drive and have never shot a gun. If I wanted to get better at them, I'd go learn. I think experience is one of the best steps you could take to improve.
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2013
Cool!
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:iconcarusmm:
carusmm Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
For me, the action of a story is hard to imagine.
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2013
Yeah
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:iconsaints-fan-12:
saints-fan-12 Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
No, i have tried and it didn't work so i might not ever try that again.
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2013
Hm well! Practice does make perfect.
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:iconsaints-fan-12:
saints-fan-12 Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
true
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:iconbalaria:
Balaria Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
I don't think I'm that good with them, at least not in making them elaborate. That's why most of the time the action I write is very short and basic. I don't go describing in amazing details how awesome the fight is or how the characters make some hard to believe martial arts moves and back flips and what have you. Things just end up short and bloody and in your face without much decorations. I suppose that sort of style has its appeal in the world of fantasy seeing as the genre is usually peppered with elaborate fights.

I'm no R.A. Salvatore who can have three chapters in a row with nothing but action. And he makes it work.
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2013
Interesting
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:iconthenaughticallife:
TheNAUGHTicalLife Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2012  Professional Writer
Not at all. Thanks for asking! :D
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2012
You're not good? haha.
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:iconthenaughticallife:
TheNAUGHTicalLife Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2012  Professional Writer
In general, yes. To this, nahp.
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2013
haha okay :)
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:iconthedeadconspiracy:
TheDeadConspiracy Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2012  Student Writer
Somewhat
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2012
haha
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:iconthedeadconspiracy:
TheDeadConspiracy Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2012  Student Writer
Where do you find humor in that?
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2012
One word answer to like, three questions. It amused me.
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:iconraspil:
raspil Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2012   Writer
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:iconchibilovett:
ChibiLovett Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh god no! I suck at writing action! I've attempted a few times and each time ended catastrophically. >.<

This also means I haven't practiced much. Maybe I should...
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2012
Practice is good :nod:
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:iconenuocale:
EnuoCale Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
The only way I can think of for it to be written well by me is to make the action itself seem creative and interesting. I.E. someone does something clever in a fight.
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2012
Interesting
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:iconenuocale:
EnuoCale Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
I.E. In one scene, someone is being chased by someone else down a flight of stairs with windows by them. He knows he can't outrun him, since the person trapped him in the building, set off timed explosives and blah blah. So the person is going to come down the stairs, and he needs to find a way to stop him. The person knowing he expects him to walk down instead starts coming down on a line he attached on the outside of the wall, on the other side. However, the first person expected this, and had set off a explosive by a window above his own floor, since he knew the person would have some type of heat vision goggles or something and know exactly where he is, trying to quietly come down, blow out the window and snipe him. But the window above blew out, and before the guy could react, he runs up the stairs, jumps out the window, grabs on to the line, and slides down, kicking him. In the meantime, the explosives explode after all, and the building starts to collapse, so they are fighting while slowly falling down, still attached to the line, and eventually once the building is at an angle where they can stand, sliding then eventually running downside it all while still fighting.

...I don't know whether the physics of buildings falling can work like that, but... future building and future explosive. That part kind of has to be taken on faith.
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2013
mhm I understand
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:iconvon19:
von19 Featured By Owner Dec 30, 2012  Student Writer
I think I'm good. My friends say I'm good but who knows?
I just write it. Edit it. Edit it. Edit it. And Edit it. Until it feels right.
Whenever I read action I grip the book harder, I read faster, my heart races, I tend to hold my breath. I try to edit with that goal in mind.
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Dec 30, 2012
interesting
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:iconmerrak:
merrak Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012  Hobbyist
I'm getting better at them. I developed some very bad habits doing text game programming, but at least I'm aware of it and can "re-train" myself.

I tend to focus more on what is going through the character's mind - since that's what I prefer to read. It's more unique to literature. (Compare to, say, TV or movies).
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Dec 30, 2012
Very nice
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:iconlytrigian:
Lytrigian Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
I've been told mine are effective. There are two components at minimum: the "choreography", and the reactions of the POV characters. The latter is probably more difficult, since during action you have even less leeway than usual for "telling", or you risk the immediacy you should be going for. A character's important reactions will show mainly in their physical reactions; what they say and how; in what they pay attention; etc. If you have to SAY a character is startled or fearful or hopeful or confident, the action stalls.
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:iconpinkymccoversong:
PinkyMcCoversong Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012  Professional Writer
I'm not great, but I've improved by a) reading awesome action scenes in books and b) watching action scenes on TV shows like Buffy and Supernatural and The X Files, and using what I see there to figure out how an action seen looks and feels.
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012
Nice!
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:icondelighted-endlessly:
Delighted-Endlessly Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
When I write an action scene they sound alright to me because I have the idea in my head but then I have some read it and they are often lost. I try but they are not my strong point.
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Dec 30, 2012
Hm yep. Only thing to do is keep on trying!
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:iconmemnalar:
Memnalar Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012
Boil it down.

Action is fast. Choppy. Elemental. Don't analyze. Don't converse.

You drain your glass, and before you can tell the guy to get bent, he's swinging a chair at you. What happens?
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:iconanukeorsplatter:
AnukeorSplatter Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Wow this actually has excellent timing as I have been working on an experiment involving a war scene without hack and slash.

What I've been doing is just getting a pen and writing down any feelings that one might feel before, durring, and after a battle. It just gets your ideas on paper and then you can pull from it when you're writing the real thing.
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012
Interesting process
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:iconeleanore-dv:
eleanore-dv Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012
Oh Christ, NO.

Not in the slightest.
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012
haha. props for honesty.
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:iconeleanore-dv:
eleanore-dv Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012
If there's one thing I learned from my mother's soap operas, honesty will get you Mexican wrestlers bursting into your house in the wee hours of the morning. *crosses fingers*
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012
in a good way? :P
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:iconeleanore-dv:
eleanore-dv Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012
But of course. I see nothing bad happening with Mexican wrestlers breaking into my home.
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012
mkay :P :dance:
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:iconmr-bananasham:
Mr-bananasham Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012
read my latest story, i wrote an action scene in there.
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:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
I'd like to say I handle it okay—I'm always surprised by how relatively short the actual action turns out (not just in my own stuff, but in whatever I'm reading, too). Most of it ends up being emotions or dialogue or running like mad.

I learned good fighting from video games and sparring, back when I did that.
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012
Yeah I know what you mean about the short thing.

My problem with video games is that there's not a lot of variation in video games--when I play video games, it's always attack attack attack without much cool stuff :P I mean, like it's fun, but there's not that much variation. That's my take, anyway, feel free to disagree :P
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:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Which games have you been playing?! There are all kinds of inventive ways to kill people in the games I play. (Except for the part where I use about the same three moves all the time. Soul Calibur makes it look good, though.)
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012
Just games :P I think I've played a good variety. Modern games are getting better at the inventive thing. But I still think it doesn't always work that way...
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:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Haha, it really depends. The first one in a series is always a bit less creative, and in general it's the arcade-style ones that really have a range of moves. (On the PS2, Kingdom Hearts wasn't like super creative, but the moves were aweeeesome.)
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:iconmackwrites:
mackwrites Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012
Kingdom Hearts peaked my interest but I never really got into it. Anyway the point here is what helps your writing, and I don't think that it helps mine :P
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