Sunday, 10 June 2012

Writers Workshop: Character Description Rewrite

Here is my rewrite for Honey's Writers Workshop exercise. But first, I want to thank everyone that commented and left advice/suggestions on the pos character description I put up last Thursday. THANK YOU! Every comment was helpful and motivating

Below is the rewrite. It's still not a true character sketch because remember, I pulled the excerpt directly from my wip. This original excerpt was written two years ago and contained 202 words. The rewrite is down 153. That's 49 words cut, but doesn't necessarily mean it's any better. In fact, there's something that still bothers me about this segment but I can't seem to put a finger on it. I'll just have to keep fiddling with it when I start my edits 


I studied the reflected image for a long while. An ashen face, hollow cheeks and purplish shadows hung beneath eyes that stared back at me. I was unrecognizable. A mental flash took me back weeks ago when dark whispers taunted my sanity and had me toying with ideas. Deadly ideas. "Slit your wrist. Do it," they said. In the end, I hacked away at my hair instead. 

Casting the memories aside, I refocused on the rest of my naked body. Most of my womanly curves were gone and I looked more like a dry, over stretched rubber band. You are a mess, Edessa. The only thing recognizable of this haggard body was the color of my eyes, still the same shade of green.

Why do I care what I look like anyway?  I tried killing myself only yesterday, does it really matter if I look like Hell? Interesting word choice, I thought. Hell…


What do you think? Did I just make a total mess of this? Did I manage some improvements? Is there anything that got lost in the rewrite? 


  1. I think it's a stronger description now, with a great deal more personality to it. Good job.

  2. I agree with Richard. This is good stuff!

  3. Thank you Honey and Richard for your positive comments. This was a really good exercise for me. (:

  4. Love the haunting quality to it... :)

  5. I love the voice that comes through in this piece. I can tell how troubled she is. However, I'm also hearing the advice I read on so many writer blogs and that is "never ever have your character looking into a mirror and describe themselves." So I don't know if you should listen to that advice or not, because this is really good.

  6. I think it's improved! It's much stronger and I think a little more focused on the character.

  7. Melissa: Thanks, glad you liked it!

    Morgan: Merci!

    Michael: Thank you! I haven't heard the "no describing themselves" advice yet. But thanks for the heads up. I'll keep it in mind. (:

    S.P. Bowers: Thanks! (:

  8. I already liked the original version, but this one is much better, because it's much more alive.

  9. I thought the first was good but now it seems to jump off the page more. Now you have a character sketch that describes Edessa effortlessly while telling us about her current frame of mind. I would be happy with that! Well done!

    1. Thank you Clay, I appreciate the comment and glad you like it.

  10. I liked it. It's not easy to do rewrites. Well done.


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