My issue fell between the unwritten rule of show, don't tell
, and a passage I recalled from some how to be a writer
book or other, which is always to credit your readers with a level of intelligence. So, allow me to set the scene.
Two boys and a girl are cajoled into participating in a pub quiz. The boys are average but the girl is a quiz genius. She has to go to the shop. which closes at 10.00pm, so the boys must fend for themselves during the literature round. The girl returns in time to check their answers, and . . .
She was panting from having hurried back, and she immediately checked our answers. “What’s A Clockwork Orange
?” she said.
“The book where you ‘d find Alex and his droogs,” Sporty said.
“Good, and this, George Orwell?”
“Who wrote Homage to Catalonia?”
“Excellent,” Sonia said, “and what on earth is pea pod the answer to?” Sporty looked at the notes he’d scribbled.
“The name of the ship in Moby Dick,”
he said. I laughed at his misinterpretation of the answer I had
whispered to him. Sonia crossed out our answer and (DILEMMA OCCURS HERE). I told him he
needs to have his ears tested.
Right, would you:
A: say that Sonia crossed out the written answer and inserted the correct one, or B: say that Sonia crossed out the written answer and replaced it with Pequod?
Option A leaves the reader to make the connection, while option B is wholly inclusive.
I've completed and uploaded the story, so I came to a decision, but rather than tell which way I went, it would be interesting to read your thoughts