“Levels” in writing

Some people have stories that begin “this one time at band camp.” I have stories that begin “this one time at Shakespeare camp.” So, this one time at Shakespeare camp, we learned about “levels.” Levels are, well, levels. Levels of intensity in voice and movement, the level/height where you place your body. In a word, levels are things you can vary. I find that this is key in writing as well as in stage acting. If you’ve got only one level of intensity and/or tension in a scene, for example, that’s a problem. Variation, especially emotional variation, is important. In fact, you’ll want to vary your level of variation. Emotional roller coasters are not always appropriate.

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