How To Pace Your Writing

On pacing.

Bad Writing (terrible, jostling pace):

Yori flung the saddle over the great black horse. He put the saddle bags down. Blue-face pushed open the door, shouting as he clattered over the wood floor.

“Hey, they’ve lost our deposit.”

Yori tugged hard at the leather piece.

“Argue with them,” Yori directed. He looked at the swinging door, where Gorm, the landlord, entered now.

“You’ve lost our money,” Yori offended.

“Not my fault,” Gorm said, wheezing. Blue-face glared at Yuri. The horse nosed at hay.

“How?” Blue-face demanded, whirling at last. The fat inn-keeper scowled.

“Those thieves will pay for what they’ve done,” Yori declared. Gorm’s face fell.

Good Writing (strong, steady pace):

Yori flung the thick saddle over the great black horse. The stirrups and girth strap jangled against the saddle skirts; the mare snuffled noisily, her pitch-black nose thrust into a net of hay.

Yori went out of the stall, and retrieved the saddle bags from a hook on the wall. Blue-face, his eyes popping with fury, and his magenta hair bristling with passion over his sky-colored skin, pushed open the door to the stable. The dyed elf shouted as he clattered over the wooden floor of the stable.

“Hey, they’ve lost our deposit, Yori!”

Yori glanced at Blue-face’s livid expression, and hid a smile as he slung the saddle bags over the mare’s back. He buckled the leather, and Blue-face let out an impassioned “tcha!” The colorful elf stomped into the stall, and fitted the girth strap through the ring. He tugged hard at the leather piece.

“Argue with them,” Yori suggested. A crashing of wood came from the end of the stable. Yori looked at the swinging door, where Gorm, the landlord, had blustered in.

“You’ve lost our money,” Yori observed.

“Not my fault,” Gorm said, wheezing. Blue-face glared at Gorm, and then grimaced at Yori. The black mare snorted noisily, and pushed her nose deeper into the hay.

“Half my silver has gone as well,” Gorm told them. The inn-keeper, Yori saw, had been staring at the obviously empty saddle bags.

“He thought it was us,” Yori murmured under his breath.

“Well, that’s a fine kettle of fish!” Blue-face said loudly, whirling on Gorm with burning eyes. The fat inn-keeper scowled.

“I’ll pay what I owe you,” Gorm said grudgingly. “I thought as you’d stolen my silver, we’d be pretty fair if I kept what was yours.”

“I didn’t touch your dirty old silver,” Blue-face snapped.

“I can see that now, lad,” Gorm said.

“Don’t patronize me!” the elf retorted.

“What will you give me, to find what’s lost?” Yori asked. Gorm studied his face, and a sharp gleam was in his eyes.

“Room and board up to a week, when you pass through,” Gorm said.

“Done,” Yori said. “Take the mare out to the stream for water,” he told the elf. “She doesn’t like the stuff here.” Blue-face took hold of the black mare’s lead, and began to back her out of the stall. “What if the thief is one of your own?” Yori asked. Gorm snarled.

“I will not harbor thieves,” the inn-keeper declared.

 

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