If you’re writing a story and the light bulb just flashed over your protagonist’s head, you really want to tell your readers all about it. “He suddenly realized…” you might write. But before you do, pause for a moment. Let’s talk about that realization and how you can show it to your readers.
Sure, we’ve talked about “showing versus telling” before, but the word “realized” deserves a conversation all to itself. There are a lot of words and phrases that writers over-use—another big one on this list is “suddenly,” for example—but becoming aware of how you use these words and why is the first step in bringing a story from okay to awesome. More