Scene Construction: when and how to show vs tell

author_picWriter and editor, Stephanie Dunn, received her MFA in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University, where she graduated valedictorian of her class. She writes Mystery, YA, and Thriller and does freelance editing in most genres.

As an editor, Stephanie has observed that writers are often too close to their work to detect subtleties that undermine a scene here, a sentence there, and weaken the overall impact of a potentially great story. Her website,, teaches writers to self-edit like professionals until they’ve spun every word into gold.

Stephanie will be presenting on scene construction: when to show versus tell, and how. What makes the difference between a technically well-written sentence versus one that draws in a reader? What clues can a writer search for to indicate that he is telling when he should be showing, and how can he fix them? How can writers create dramatic, enthralling scenes even when there is little-to-no action? Conversely, what common mistakes dilute or melodramatize important, action-packed or emotional scenes? We’ll tackle these issues and more on March 17th, 7:00PM, in the Storytelling Wing of the Orem Library.

In her free time, Stephanie concocts music mashups, plans events, and runs a bed and breakfast within her home. When travelling, she has a penchant for rainy forests and Western Europe. She and her husband reside among the orange groves of sun-kissed SoCal.

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