Lately, I read some pages from a friend's WIP (which is quite action-packed) and finally realized why I felt so detached from her writing. It was like I was in a helicopter, hovering over the scene. Great action, but what I really wanted was to be in the scene - not above it.
How many of us watched O.J. and his buddy ride the freeway at a snail's pace? Did any of you wonder what the heck they were talking about as a string of police vehicles plodded along behind them? THAT'S what my friend needs to do. THAT'S what we all need to do.
It's our duty to drag the reader into the scene, wring them out and have them blow out a soft puff of air when they're done. If they have to set the book down for a few seconds to catch their breath and compose themselves - we've done our job.
I know a writer has been successful when I laugh out loud, wipe away a tear and heave a sigh when the H/h declare their love. We all have favorite authors who bring out these reactions. Mine is Kristan Higgins. Jill Shalvis runs a close second.
In no way do I mean to infer that O.J. is guilty of murdering Nicole Brown-Simpson or Ron Goldman (although it is my deeply held belief he did). I used this iconic moment in history as a reference to give writers a strong visual.