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How to Write Smoother Scene Transitions

Have you ever watched an amateur-produced video with terrible cuts that hurt your head, and you became extremely confused about what was happening? Like in movies and videos, writers have scenes and transitions as well. For us, this is most commonly seen in fan fiction. Writers of fan fiction who want to start your first original work, this blog is for you.


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#1: Know the POVs


There are three POVs, and only two are commonly used in writing. The fourth is hard to pull off, but it exists. I'll briefly summarise what they do, but you should apply them correctly and stick to one without jumping or switching to another in your writing. Please make the distinction easy to follow for your readers if you have to change voices.


1st person


Most commonly used in romance novels with self-insert main characters. It is written from the eyes of the main character in an "I" voice.


2nd person


Least commonly used. It's written in a "you" voice, like a narrator telling the main character what to do. It's commonly seen in gamebooks that allow the reader to participate in making their own stories.


3rd person


It is commonly used in fiction, and non-fiction works with a narrator's voice. It can take sides with the main character's focus or remain a neutral party throughout. You write this with a "He", "She", and "They" voice.


4th wall


This is a unique way of breaking away from logic. Deadpool uses this technique a lot. It's when the character in the book starts saying things that a character should not be saying as if it was aware it was a character in a book and readers were reading what they did.



#2: Zoom, Pan, Zoom


Now that you know the different perspectives in writing and voices, it's time to determine the angle of view you're writing in. Do you want more details? Less details? Something that gives the readers a lot of atmosphere for a world setting?


The zoom, pan and zoom trick helps the writer to create the correct pacing required in the book without cramming or cutting too many details. At the same time, shifting the focus gently from a wide angle to a close-up zoom helps with the transition before a new scene occurs. Remember to make it easy for the reader's eyes. You don't want to move too quickly in a close-up zoom or jump from place to place in a wide-angle shot. Similarly, in writing, you should not abruptly cut from person to person to push the plot along or force an event to happen without proper preparation.


Using this technique, the writer can slowly ease and lead the reader into something else or set up a plot to surprise them from where they can't see with foreshadowing techniques. Craft every scene with care and patience. Writing a scene is like gardening. Failure at any one point and negligence can lead to a flower's death. Hold yourself back, and don't overdo it!


#3: Angles


This is a fascinating part about transitioning from scene to scene. Many writers use a line break to help jump the scenes. Chapters and paragraphs are also some ways to indicate a change in an event. However, angles are something less explored by authors.


Think of angles as moving shots in a movie. At first, you can only see a woman's face. She is talking, but she isn't moving. You have no idea who she is speaking with. The only hint you have is a male's voice. You only learn who she was talking to when the camera slowly spins and shows her side profile instead of her full front face. This is a change in angle, also known as a reveal.


It is especially useful when introducing new elements, such as characters or foreshadowing a major upcoming event. It is also good at keeping the readers in suspense by leaving them little breadcrumbs to imagine until the full reveal.


#4: PATIENCE


I mentioned this earlier in #2. However, patience is required for a smooth transition. I know you want to skip all the details about how she left the baker to get on a train and head home. However, you still have to let the readers know how she got home before she found her husband cheating on her! Your main character cannot teleport, so be sure to properly write those in instead of using line breaks. You don't have to describe everything in vivid detail, but you could use a wide angle to delve a little more into foreshadowing during her journey. Alternatively, slipping in deep POV and character building is always recommended.


Never chop the scene to move the plot. Never butcher a chicken before it is fully grown and fat.



#5: No Cramming


In writing, the writer often gets impatient and frustrated when crafting a scene. As a result, info-dumping is a common side effect. Instead of allowing the reader time to enjoy the flavours of the tea you're making, you're adding all sorts of condiments into one cup and serving it. It's not going to taste good.


Pace it out, and let the reader enjoy each flavour individually with complementing biscuits if you have any. Drop fan services occasionally if you're writing an e-fiction work. Do not rush a masterpiece.



#6: Pacing


As mentioned above, this is important. While you don't cram and overload the reader, it is also crucial to ensure you do not include too many details that would bore the reader. Let them breathe and leave some for later. Tease them, and they'll thank you for it.


#7: Describe & Immerse


Details. Details. Details. What do they see? What do they hear? What gestures or little actions do they do? Any symbolism and foreshadowing?


Don't forget that scene transitioning isn't solely about the plot. You also have to care about the world-building, characters and, most importantly, viewer interest. Sink them into what is happening and make them a part of your fictional world. Trap them in your book and hold them as hostages to the thrill.



In conclusion...


Practice will make it better. Write your story as if you're shooting a movie. You must wear many hats, from the actor, sound tech guy, and lighting assistant. However, unlike a production team, a writer must do all these alone.


Don't rush it, be kind to yourself, always.

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