Does each word move the story along? Check. What’s wrong with it? Try reading it to Rex again and listen to your words. Forget about your friends and family, since they’re just going to tell you what you want to hear. There. Hear that? Read that section again. There’s no life in your character, nor is there an appropriate description in the narrative. You have to write visually and bring your book to life.
What is writing visually? It’s something we’ve all heard before. Show, don’t tell. For those of you who haven’t heard those particular words, here’s my definition: It’s when you reader can put himself/herself in your book. You should engage all five senses to do this. Let your readers feel Jason punch Harry without warning. Let everyone see Mary bend over and smell those fragrant roses. Have your characters talk naturally. Describing in a few words what they feel (emotionally), see, question, etc. Also, people aren’t robots in real life. When was the last time you saw someone talking with expression never changing or not talking with their hands? Maybe this person held their hair down as the wind blew?
For instance, Keira left school. “I’m going to the mall,” she said to Sasha. Here’s the same sentence brought to life. Keira raced down the hall, stopping when she saw Sasha putting her books in the locker. “I’m going to the mall after school,” she puffed. “Wanna come?” “Sure! Wait a sec until I fix my hair. Maybe that new guy will be there.” Which description would you rather have in your manuscript? Which one shows more instead of tells? That’s right. This all boils down to ‘show, not tell’.
Take a look at these sentences: The three young people climbed the hill. Okay. Now read this: As the three friends climbed, they swatted flies away from their faces. Bees buzzed around them while low-hanging tree branches smacked them in the face. Which sentence shows more, thus giving it life?
The trick is to give your characters some character not only in the dialogue but in the narrative as well. In the narrative, your reader can see them struggling up that hill. In dialogue they can see, feel the emotions of the girls and relate to them.
I’ve found some books, blogs, or websites that will help you with this.
Word Magic for Writers
You Can Write Children’s Books
Here’s a video by The Three Minute Writing Teacher that will help you along the way to bring your book to life!