Writing Action


This isn't a How-To post. Not yet anyway.
Next term, as part of the graduation requirement at SHU I have to teach a short module on the topic of my choice. I've got a few kicking around in my noggin; one is How to Write Action Scenes.

I've been told by more than one fellow writer/author that I write action scenes very well. I find that really flattering. So when the time came to brainstorm about what I might want to teach, action scenes popped into my head.
Here's my problem though: I have no idea how I write them well.
I just write the scenes. I never realized they were done particularly well. So I don't really know how I do it. And if I don't know how I do it, how do I teach someone else to do it well?

In thinking about possible reasons why this is a strength in my writing, I've come to the conclusion that it must have been all the MUSHes I played.
Back in the early days of the net (man, am I dating myself or what?), there were online games called MUSHes (short for Multi User Shared Hallucination). All your Evercrack, World of Warcraft, Star Wars Galaxies games had their origins in the early MUDs (Multi User Dungeons) and MUSHes.

I MUSHed.A lot.

In a MUSH, you made a character (complete with stats, for all the gamers out there) and you logged in and roleplayed. In text. No flashy spells, no pretty graphics. Just words. And you roleplayed with other people. You typed out your dialogue and your actions, so that other people understood what you were saying and doing.
I think that's where my ability to write action came from. MUSHing. Perhaps that's an idea I can use to teach how to write action. Hmmm. That might be worthwhile. It could make for a fun class activity. Heehee. Okay, my mind is working now! Bwahahahaha!
Any suggestions for other ways to teach writing action scenes?

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