Get Fresh! Write the BEST Body Language with Margie Lawson

Margie LawsonBy Margie Lawson

 Big hugs to Laura Drake for inviting me to post at WITS today.

I love teaching writers how to create their best, best, best writing. Writing that draws the reader in so deep, that when the POV character’s heart races, the reader clutches their chest.

Best writing carries specificity and clarity. It carries nuanced power in its structure and style. It carries a compelling cadence in every sentence that drives the reader from the first word to the last.

Best writing cuts words that reader’s skim and adds words that increase power.

Writing body language and dialogue cues at the best level pushes writers beyond using at-the-ready basics and beat-fillers. Best writing doesn’t use words and phrases that are predictable, overused, clichéd. Best writing is fresh writing.

Writers Need to be Kinesics Specialists

Writers need to be experts at reading body language, experts at writing nuanced body language on the page.

Research indicates a whopping ninety-plus percent of all communication messages are nonverbal.  Less than ten percent of communication can be attributed to the words.

What’s the implication for writers? The odds are good that writers need more body language on the page, and more body language that carries psychological power.

Most writers fall into patterns on the page. They write variations of overused sentences about hard stares, narrowed eyes, and lips that roll in, get tugged, chewed, nibbled, and pulled into a thin line. Writers need to know the full range of body language and dialogue cues – and how to write fresh.

Examples and Deep Editing Analyses

Two of my biggest gifts to writers are teaching them to think like psychologists, and teaching them how to capture that psychologically-based power on their pages. I’ve developed dozens (hundreds?) of deep editing tips and techniques that teach writers how to psychologically empower their writing.

Deep Editing Analysis:  Lisa Unger, Black Out:

New York Times and international bestselling author, Lisa Unger, writes adrenaline-driven literary thrillers. Reviewers describe her writing as masterful, riveting, evocative.

Example:

I see a flash of something on her face that I’ve never seen before. It happens when our eyes connect through the thick glass of her front door. It’s just the ghost of an expression, and in another state of mind I might not even have noticed it. It’s fear. Vivian is the strongest woman I’ve ever known, and when I see the look on her face, my heart goes cold.

 Analysis:

If you’ve taken my writing body language course, you know flicker-face emotion. Because this flash of fear on Vivian’s face is critical, Lisa Unger wanted the reader to pay attention to this news of a difference.

How did Lisa Unger get the reader’s attention?

She did not use a stronger descriptive word.

She did not have the POV character react outwardly with a typical line, “What’s wrong?”

She did not just label the look, fear, and move on.

She empowered that look by:

  • amplifying it, 71 words
  • indicating the flash of emotion on Vivian’s face was so brief that she almost missed it
  • labeling it fear
  • letting the reader know Vivian didn’t intend to show her fear
  • telling the reader that Vivian is strong (implying rarely fearful), this is news of a difference
  • using cadence
  • backloading– ending a sentence with a power word
  • using the look as a stimulus and showing (not telling) the POV character’s reaction
  • including a visceral response

That example, what I call flicker-face emotion, kicks off a turning point. That’s why Lisa Unger amplified it. In my Four Levels of Powering Up Emotion, that passage is at the third level, Empowered.

Lisa Unger included a visceral response to strengthen her emotional hook for the reader.

She placed the visceral response at the end of the paragraph to backload with emotive power.

Example:

I notice how still he is. There was so much anxiety and adrenaline living inside me that I couldn’t keep myself from fidgeting, shifting my weight from foot to foot, padding a few steps away, then back toward him. But he is fixed and solid. He keeps his hands in his pockets, his eyes locked on some spot off in the distance. All there is to him is his raspy voice and the story he tells.

Analysis:  Lisa Unger spotlights the contrast between how the POV character displays her tension—and how the non-POV character keeps his cool.

Specificity:  shifting weight, padding/steps away and back, hands in pockets, eyes/spot in distance, raspy voice

Emotional Hits – includes TELLING and SHOWING = 11 Emotional Hits

Telling:  anxiety, adrenaline, fidgeting, fixed, solid

Showing:  shifting weight, padding/steps away, back, hands in pockets, eyes/spot in distance, raspy voice

Cadence:  Read the passage out loud. You’ll notice variability in sentence length, smooth  phrasing, and a last sentence that is pleasing to your Cadence Ear.

All there is to him is his raspy voice and the story he tells.

What if Lisa Unger had written the last sentence like this?

All there is to him is his raspy voice and his story.

AACK!  Hear it? The cadence is off. Read her line again:

All there is to him is his raspy voice and the story he tells.

Ah – My Cadence Ear is happy.

Deep Editing Analysis:  Dennis Lehane, Moonlight Mile

Dennis Lehane’s writing carries a cadence-driven lyrical power and fresh street-smart dialogue that make his gritty crime novels bestsellers—and make his book-based movies blockbusters. The dialogue in these books, Gone, Baby, Gone, Mystic River, and Shutter Island, was so strong, it was used in the movies.

Example: The POV character is angry with Helene, the scuzzy mother of the teenage girl who is missing. Helene doesn’t seem worried about her missing daughter.

Here’s how Lehane characterized Helene earlier: “If it smelled of stupid, Helene just had to be somewhere nearby.”

After the silence went on a bit too long, Helene said, “What’re you thinking?”

“I’m thinking how I’ve never had the impulse to hit a woman in my life, but you get me in an Ike Turner frame of mind.”

She flicked her cigarette into the parking lot. “Like I haven’t heard that before.”

“Where. Is. She.”

“We. Don’t. Know.” Helene bulged her eyes at me like a pissy twelve-year-old, which, in terms of emotional development, wasn’t far off the mark.

Analysis:

Cadence – Read it out loud. You’ll hear the cadence drive the reader through every sentence. No meandering. No stalling.

Allusion – Rhetorical Device – the reference to his Ike Turner frame of mind.

Clichés – You may know I’m not a fan of clichés.

1. Like I haven’t heard that before.

In this scene, that overused line carried power, strengthened characterization, and made me laugh. I approve using this cliché here.

2. . . . wasn’t far off the mark.

It works. It’s tight. I like the cadence. And I can’t think of a better way to end that sentence.

If your name is Dennis Lehane, I may excuse a few clichés.🙂

Period. Infused. Sentences.  My term for describing when the author morphs what would have been a normal sentence into sequential single word sentences. Like. This.

“Don’t. Touch. Me.”

Lehane shared what I call a Dialogue Cue. He didn’t add a sentence describing how the words were delivered. He showed it structurally. The punctuation indicates that each word is clipped, and that the character who is speaking is big-time irritated.

He also did something I haven’t seen on the page before, but I’ve heard it in real life. He had one character speak in that clipped style, and had another character respond the same way.

“Where. Is. She.”

“We. Don’t. Know.”

The reader knows the second character is mocking the first. But Lehane doesn’t TELL us. He SHOWS us. Smart. And smart alecky in a fun way too. 🙂

Facial Expression, Amplified:

Helene bulged her eyes at me like a pissy twelve-year-old, which, in terms of emotional development, wasn’t far off the mark.

Lehane could have stopped with: Helene bulged her eyes at me.

Lehane could have stopped with: Helene bulged her eyes at me like a twelve-year-old.

Lehane could have stopped with: Helene bulged her eyes at me like a pissy twelve-year-old.

Ah! Adding the word, pissy, adds psychological power. It taps a universal emotion in readers.

Most adults have dealt with a pissy twelve-year-old, a child, niece, nephew, neighbor. Adding ‘pissy’ elicits an internal nod. It ratchets up the tension and tightens the emotional hook.

But Lehane didn’t stop with that strong sentence. He amplified the line and empowered the emotion. Here’s his sentence again:

Helene bulged her eyes at me like a pissy twelve-year-old, which, in terms of emotional development, wasn’t far off the mark.

Example:

She and Angie hugged then in that unforced way women can pull off that eludes even those men in the world who are at ease with the bro clench. Sometimes, I give Angie shit about it. I call it the Lifetime Hug or the Oprah, but there was no easy sentiment powering this one, just a recognition, I guess, or an affirmation.

“She deserved you.” Angie said.

Elaine wept silently into her shoulder and Angie held the back of her head and rocked her the way she so often does with our daughter.

“She deserved you.”

Analysis:

Empowered Hug – juxtaposes emotional pain and humor

Amplified Hug — Lehane devoted 62 words to describe that hug. It deepened characterization. These two women had met maybe ten minutes earlier. Amplifying the hug showed Angie’s personality. The way Lehane contrasted gender differences regarding comfort level and styles of hugs also hooked readers.

Deep Emotion – Specificity, Comforting adult like child

Intentional Echo – Dialogue repeated for impact.

Powerful Cadence — Read it out loud. The cadence carries power too.

Example — Reaction of teen age girl

Her façade of apathetic cool collapsed and she looked about nine years old. Nine years old and abandoned by her parents at the mall.

Body Language – Lehane TELLS it, he doesn’t show her face. But it’s written FRESH. That’s why it works. The reader conjures an image of a teenage girl with her I-don’t-care-apathetic look of teen-coolness collapsing into the look of a nine-year-old who is terrified.

Power Words: façade, apathetic, collapsed, abandoned

Rhetorical Device, Alliteration: cool collapsed

Rhetorical Device, Amplification: Second sentence

Rhetorical Device, Anadiplosis: . . . about nine years old. Nine years old and . . .

Anadiplosis is one of 30 rhetorical devices I cover in my Deep Editing class.

Cadence – Compelling!

Example — Here’s another deceptively simple line that carries the power of cadence.

The smile that blew across his face was the kind movie stars give on red carpets—that much wattage, that much charm.

Lehane did not write these overused basics:

He shot her a charming smile.

He gave her a movie-star smile.

He gave her a high-wattage smile.

Lehane didn’t write that smile in a basic way, because they’re tried and trite. We’ve all read those smiles. They don’t carry interest or cadence or power.

A Few More Examples

Melanie Milburne, His Inconvenient Wife, multi-Margie-grad

Two shrugs– 1st shrug, amplified; 2nd shrug, hyphenated-run-on:

Damien shrugged in that detestably aloof way that had annoyed her the first time she’d met him.

He gave another one of those could-mean-anything shrugs.

His glance (stimulus) elicited her visceral response; includes dialogue lead-in:

 “You can’t stop me.”

 “Oh, can’t I?” The light of challenge in his eyes made her stomach free-fall in panic.

Christa Allan, Walking On Broken Glass, multi-Margie-grad

Set Up:  POV character is with therapist. He just asked if she would describe her mom as affectionate.

“Are you kidding?” This was a no-brainer. “Mom was the queen of the ‘air hug.’ You know, the stiff-armed hug where another person can almost fit in the middle between the two of you.

Next Example:  A hug from friend in rehab:

Later, she hugged me, a warm, round squeeze, just Goldilocks right.

One last example from Nothing Sweeter, Laura Drake, multi-Margie-grad, Immersion-grad

A touch that elicits a visceral response.

She tried to ignore the tingle that spread from her palm up her arm, as if his touch had mainlined into her blood.

Wow. I can always count on fresh writing from Laura Drake!

Wrapping Up

This blog addressed a miniscule sliver of what I teach on writing body language. I could share 7,958 more examples and analyses. That may be hyberbole. Or not.

Now you know my teaching style. If you want to hone your deep editing skills and expand your writing body language and dialogue cues repertoire, please consider taking my on-line course in March: Writing Body Language and Dialogue Cues Like a Psychologist.

Check it out! Lawson Writer’s Academy.

Here’s the full schedule of March courses:

1.   World Genesis: Building a world from the ground up – Instructor: Suzanne Lazear

2.   Virtues, Vices, and Plots – Instructor: Sarah Hamer

3.   The Coffee Break Guide to Business Plans for Writers – Instructor: Amy Denim

4.   Writing Body Language and Dialogue Cues Like a Psychologist – Instructor: Margie Lawson

5.   What you need to know before you ask for that review – 2 week course – Instructor: Heather Lire

Read course description and register here: http://www.MargieLawson.com.

Chime in. Post a comment!  Or just say Hi!

If you comment, you’ll be included in a drawing for one of my online courses on writing craft offered through Lawson Writer’s Academy. The drawing will be on Tuesday at 8:00PM Mountain Time.

We’ll post the winner on Wednesday’s blog and on Margie’s website.

Thank you!  I’m looking forward to your comments!

About Margie

margie-lawson-1-readingMargie Lawson—editor, international presenter— teaches writers how to use her psychologically-based editing systems and deep editing techniques to create page turners.

Margie has presented over eighty full day master classes in the U.S., Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Writers who have studied her material credit her innovative deep editing approaches with taking their writing several levels higher—to publication, awards, and bestseller lists.

To learn about online courses through Lawson Writer’s Academy, Margie’s 4-day Immersion Master Classes, her full day and weekend Master Class presentations, keynote speeches, Lecture Packets, and newsletter, visit www.margielawson.com.

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91 Responses to Get Fresh! Write the BEST Body Language with Margie Lawson

  1. Julie Glover says:

    I always get something out of your teaching, Margie! Love the examples here. Since I’m currently DEEP EDITING my stuff, this prods me to be even more focused on nailing the body language — to dig deeper, amp it up, write fresh. Hope to take another course soon. Or see you in Immersion? Something, sometime.

    Thanks!

    • Hello Immersion-Grad Julie!

      I remember your fresh writing from Immersion class. Dig deep into deep editing. Write fresh. Add power. Review your Deep Editing class lectures, including those 30 uber-cool rhetorical devices, and use some to boost cadence and power. You can do it all!

      Ah! You’re hungry for a second Immersion class. I have some openings in both Immersion classes in June, in Dallas! Or come on up to the top of the mountain! Colorado is so beautiful, you may not want to leave.🙂

      • Julie Glover says:

        *crossing fingers* Would love to come to Colorado! Yes, your state is beautiful. But as a born-and-bred Texan, yeah, I’d come back to my Lone Star State from anywhere. It’s my home suh-weet home!😉

        • HELLO EVERYONE!

          Someone who dropped by the blog today emailed me and asked me to post a list of writing craft classes I teach online, and when they’re taught.

          Here it is!

          1. Empowering Characters’ Emotions — Taught every January

          2. Deep Editing, Rhetorical Devices, and More — Taught every February

          3. Writing Body Language and Dialogue Cues Like a Psychologist — Taught every March

          4. A Deep Editing Guide to Make Your Openings Pop! — Taught every May

          5. Visceral Rules: Beyond Hammering Hearts — Taught every August

          6. Fab 30: Advanced Deep Editing, A Master Class — Taught 3 times a year

          Lecture packets are available for the first three courses now.

          Lecture packets will be available for MAKE YOUR OPENINGS POP! and VISCERAL RULES next weekend!

          Drop by my home page, http://www.MargieLawson.com, click on Lawson Writer’s Academy, and check out the course descriptions.

          I load every course with tons of examples and deep editing analyses. Dozens of learning opportunities in each class!

  2. amyskennedy says:

    Hi Margie, I have a three ring binder bulging with your lessons (I almost wrote brains, but, I thought that might be a little too much!) from Empowering Character Emotions. I think I’ll add these examples to my “Margie” file. Thanks for all your insight!
    P.S. I’m half-way in love with Dennis Lehane because of how he writes.

    • Hello Amy!

      You’re smart to have all the lectures from Empowering Characters’ Emotions printed, and in a binder. Good for you!

      I hope to see you in one of my other courses sometime. Lots more learning opps!
      Nudge. Nudge. 🙂

  3. Wonderful post, Margie! I recently finished the Madness To Method workshop with Tiffany and learned so much. Loved the examples you used and I will definitely check out the March workshop because I’m guilty of narrowed eyes and pursed lips.🙂.

    • Carol —

      Tiffany Lawson Inman’s courses are loaded with learning opportunities too!

      I hope I get to work with you in Writing Body Language and Dialogue Cues Like a Psychologist next month. I bet you’d love every teaching point!

  4. Nothing like a Margie refresher to start your day! I’m in EDITS right now, but I’m getting ready to dive into deep editing again next month. Love Margie!!

  5. Oh, gosh, Margie. It’s like I’m back in your BLDC class thinking, thinking, thinking of ways to add scene power. I hope to be back in March for at least one of your classes. I’m torn.

    Revisit BLCD for some Margie Magic, or take advantage of one of the new classes offered at THE Writing Academy. They all seem interesting, but the one that appeals most at the moment is Sarah’s. I have no problems with virtues. It’s the vices that give me hives.

    [In fiction or life? You decide.]

    We finally moved. My new home is as settled as it can be until our built ins arrive.

    A road trip seems in order for my free-to-be-me sanity. Perhaps I’ll plunk myself on your front doorstep and follow you about reading. I know you. Despite all that might be happening, you’ll drop pearls of wisdom each time my words hit a speed bump.

    A plan! I have a plan! <=== Yes. I know you hate those !!!!'s

    [You’ve been warned. ;-)]

    • Hey Gloria!

      Congrats on the move! Loop me in on scheduling your road trip. In the next three months, I’m presenting in Shreveport, Charlotte, St. Louis, Atlanta, and Philadelphia, and teaching 6 Immersion classes. I’m sure we can match schedules!

  6. susielindau says:

    Great insight! Thanks for sharing. I will definitely cue in on more body language as I make my way through the last bit of polishing.

  7. Erica says:

    Great post, as always!🙂

  8. emlee5134 says:

    My favorite post on here so far, Margie. You not only TOLD us about body language, you SHOWED us. More deep thinking on my part will definitely improve my writing skills. Thanks so much for sharing your expertise with us.

    • Hello Emlee!

      Thank you for chiming in. You are so right! I load my courses with examples and tell and show and show and show!

      I don’t have to be psychic to know you’ve never taken one of my online classes.

      I dissect and analyze the examples. I also teach writers deep editing systems and techniques I developed. Ones they can use to add psychological power to their WIP and make it a page-turner.

      If you knew what you were missing, you wouldn’t be missing what you could learn.

      Thanks again!

  9. daphodill says:

    Reblogged this on Daphodill's Garden and commented:
    This article appealed to a primal part of me. I want to press these teachings into my belly and birth something magnificent. The breakdown of the examples clarifies a concept that, at first glance, seems daunting. Great teachings.
    Happy writing!!

    • Hello Daphodill!

      I appreciate the reblog! Thank you!

      Love your fresh, impassioned, line.
      I want to press these teachings into my belly and birth something magnificent.

      Hope I get to work with you in an online class sometime!

  10. Thank you for all the wonderful examples. I love them. Very helpful.

  11. terriponce says:

    Can’t say enough about these examples. I’m taking the Deep Editing course right now, and am learning to amp up my storytelling in ways I’d never considered before. It’s been inspirational (like having a cheerleader at your side) and educational! So glad I found Margie!

  12. Janet Walden-West says:

    Thanks for the examples. Very timely, as I sit and stare at a MS desperately in need to revisions.

    • Hello Janet —

      Thank you. I’m glad the blog was timely.

      Just want you to know that my blogs are like a drop of paint in a Jackson Pollock painting. Each of my online courses provides the full how-to-empower-your-writing picture.

  13. More great examples. I’ve taken this course before. Maybe more than once. But listening in on this blog is enticing me to go grab it again.

  14. jbiggar2013 says:

    Great post Margie, amazing how a word or two can change the whole structure of a sentence.🙂
    I’m taking a class with Laura right now, and yes, she’s wonderful.

  15. Debbie Allen says:

    Love your examples, Margie! I still refer to my Empowering Character Emotions notes. It may be time to take another course!

  16. Margie, I’ve been agonizing over getting more emotion in my writing. What better way than in body language. I’ll be checking your course out.

  17. Eyes wide. Elbows propped on the desk. Chin resting on thumbs, while my mind eagerly absorbs the useful morsels of writing craft you drop deliciously in your post. Thank you!

  18. Deb Gardner Allard says:

    Wanda, This is what I meant to forward to you, Deb

  19. I am constantly looking for new ways to describe common nonverbal cues. sometimes it even works. i loved this post, wish it was longer.

    • Hello Kate —

      Yay! You want more!

      If you want 250+ pages more, check out my March class: Writing Body Language and Dialogue Cues Like a Psychologist. You’ll find more than you anticipated, including six categories of dialogue cues, and amplifying with rhetorical devices, and my four levels of powering up emotion, and more, and more, and more!

  20. Deb Gardner Allard says:

    Pat, Read this article. It’s great. I subscribe to Margie Lawson’s posts and also purchased her course on body cues and dialogue tags. You might enjoy this, it is very helpful for writing. Deb

  21. Rosalyn says:

    This is tremendously helpful–particularly the way you break down the examples. Also, since my day job includes teaching college freshmen about rhetoric, I applaud the use of rhetorical devices in fiction.🙂

    • Rosalyn —

      So cool to meet another lover of rhetorical devices! I teach 30 rhetorical devices in my Deep Editing class. One of my favorites is polysyndeton used in a zeugma. I call it poly-zeugma.

      You and I could sit down together and talk GREEK for hours. 😉

      Thanks for posting. I hope to see you in a class, or connect at a conference sometime!

  22. Great article. Very helpful… THANKS!🙂

  23. sjmn60 says:

    I’m always looking for ways to make my writing different, edgier, cleaner. Every now and again, I come across something that helps to accomplish that – like this blog. Thanks.

  24. Great examples. Well analyzed. You make me want to get writing again!

  25. Pamela Stewart says:

    Hi, Margie. Always amazes me that every single time you post I learn something vital. Thanks!
    (Vital wasn’t at the end of my original sentence but I deep edited for backloading. ;))

    • Pamela —
      You were smart to BACKLOAD and end that sentence with your power word — vital.
      I bet you’re backloading and deep editing in dozens of ways to make your WIP a page turner!

  26. Tania Harris says:

    This was awesome – thank you!

  27. *waves at Margie!* Hi Margie!

    How I miss being on your mountain!!🙂 Your posts are such great reminders of your classes. I always come away with something that refreshes my brain and my writing, again and again.

    For anyone who is new to Margie’s teachings, I cannot recommend them enough. Truly. She will change the way you write.

  28. Beige Wishart says:

    Margie,
    My head is in the editing of my book, but took time for a WITS treat. Your post opens possibilities with great examples, fresh, and delicious.
    Best,
    Beige

  29. Hi Miss Margie! You are so smart and always remind me I need to “write harder.” Great examples of fresh writing. I should take your March class.🙂

    Love you,

    Cher

  30. *waves at Margie* totally enjoying the Deep Editing class right now! Great examples, thanks for the post!

  31. Love all your examples, and could any be more perfect or fresher than an Ike Turner frame of mind? I wish my brain could come up with stuff like that!

  32. Robin Olson says:

    I can never get enough of Margie Lawson! Another drink from the hydrant!

  33. Hi Margie! As always, excellent examples! I have heard nothing but great things about your classes. I just took a class from Tiffany and she was amazing. But it was the holidays. I was sick. Then she traveled and got sick. It was kind of crazy, yet we worked through it. I love the sound of your March class. Writing body language and dialogue cues is on my must do list. My MC needs this class!🙂

  34. This was a great reminder of how important those dialog cues can be! I’m looking forward to taking the class again next month. It’s my reward for finishing my draft in February!

    Hugs!

  35. Shanda says:

    What? More packets! And classes I haven’t taken! This is exciting news indeed.
    I am loving Fab30 and Laura’s Submissions class– great feedback in both. Laura is so helpful. Take her class if you need a pinch in the pants. Or two. She is great. And Fab30 has some fabulous Margie grads who help any way they can. And, of course, Margie’s there to dig deep, which she does so well. Best money I’ve spent in years. Thank you, Margie.🙂
    Also good to know Fab30 repeats 3x! I’m rolling my quarters right now.
    Shanda

  36. Love the Margie magic! Been a fan ever since Margie spoke at my very first writers conference in Australia:)

  37. Wendy Kelly says:

    Margie, this is exactly what I needed to hear! I would love to take one of your classes, and signed on to receive your newsletter. Thank you for sharing your wisdom!

  38. Thanks for sharing so much here in this blog, Margie! I really enjoyed your EDITS System presentation at CRW on Saturday, and reading this blog has given me another reason to really look at my writing in a different way. Body language is something that really fascinates me, and FRESH writing is something that I plan to achieve this year – so thank you for your generous sharing – as always. You ROCK! “: )
    Lori

  39. Kris Lynn says:

    Thank you for this terrific blog. It is almost four in the morning here in Central Cal and I’ve been wrestling with a scene that has me in a Rope-hung figure-four armlock (I just looked that up on Wikipedia – sounds painful, no?) Your class must be terrific because the in a little slip of a blog I found help with the scene. Well, at least a few counter-moves to use in the match (like the Tiger feint crucifix armbar ;-))

  40. Jeanne C. Stein says:

    Margie– I need you!! I’m signing up for your body language and dialogue cues today!!!
    XOXOX Jeanne

  41. Helpful blog, Margie. Thanks so much. I need to learn how to do this analysis instead of trying to absorb it through osmosis.

  42. Adele Downs says:

    Thanks for a terrific lesson. I’m a huge Lisa Unger fan, have read all of her books, and have attended her signings. I enjoyed your analysis of BLACK OUT. I look forward to meeting you at Valley Forge Romance Writers this spring!

    Best–Adele

  43. Diana Beebe says:

    Your posts are always so helpful, Margie! One of these days I’m going to make it to one of your Immersion classes.😀 My first step is getting through your ECE lecture packet.

  44. Leslie Budewitz says:

    Perfect timing, Margie! I was just staring at the page hoping for a new way to see and describe my characters’ movements when your note about this post came in. Thank you! Looking forward to a great presentation this fall at the Flathead River Writers Conference.

  45. Great post! I love the analysis that shows how and why the writing works.

  46. Yvonne Montgomery says:

    Thanks so much for the post, Margie, it couldn’t be more timely. I’m starting with the packet and looking forward to taking a class in the future. Cheers!

  47. Julie Benson says:

    Thanks for this Margie. I’m struggling with body language and emotions in my current book and am hoping this will give me the boost I need.

  48. Jackie Rod says:

    Saturday I did a workshop for East Metro Atlanta Writers and stressed the Margie factor to those who want to hone their craft.

  49. Reblogged this on 4writersandreaders and commented:
    Writers, here’s a great post to check out! ~ Bette A. Stevens http://www.4writersandreaders.com

  50. MIa says:

    This was wonderful. A friend, Kate Wood, highly recommended you and this blog posting. I def owe her – this was a great post. Thank you!

  51. Susan Dunn says:

    As always, Margie. Fabulous examples.

  52. andileroy says:

    Wow. I’m fresh off of Margie’s January “Defeating Self-Defeating Behaviors” class so I know her teaching style and how much she packs into each lecture. I highly recommend her online courses and lecture packets. I may need to enroll in this Body Language course myself. This blog post sold me on it!

  53. Reblogged this on The Writer's Parlor and commented:
    I’ve read through this, and already have implemented the language into my writing. I can’t believe how well the changes have improved the content!

  54. First of all, thank you so much for this post! I’ve always felt a certain something lacked in my writing, especially when I knew what I wanted to say, but never could find the right words to do it. I’ve taken your suggestions to heart, and what a difference it’s made for me! I am very interested in the body language course!🙂

  55. HELLO EVERYONE!

    I loved connecting with all the happy writers here! Thank you for taking the time to click over to WITS, read my blog, and post comments.

    Random.org likes one of you more than all the others.

    Random.org selected this winner:…………ALISSA CALLEN!

    Congratulations Alissa!

    Ah – You heard me speak in 2008, at Romance Writers of Australia, in Sydney!

    Did you attend my full day master class? Or were you at one of my shorter workshops for the conference?

    I’d love to present for Romance Writers of Australia again. 😉

    Please email me, and I’ll enroll you in one of my online classes.

    I appreciate all the Writer’s in the Storm bloggers. THANK YOU to WITS own Fae Rowen for posting my blog this month.

    I’ll be back guest blogging for WITS next month. See you here on March 26th!

    I will respond to all comments on the blog. Check back! You’ll find my responses!

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  57. Pingback: Writing body language that empowers your character’s emotions | onewildword

  58. That’s a great lesson in how to deal with something I often struggle with. Thanks!

  59. As a budding writer i found this post really interesting. I think we all fall prey to over describing and using hacked to death sentences. I especially found the emphasis on cadences a very interesting point to keep in mind.

    Thanks for this.

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  62. Reblogged this on fiction bound and commented:
    Like the first snap in a firecracker, these are great tips to infuse your writing with deeper, more meaningful dialogue and body language.

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