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Writing exercise: The unexpected discovery

A dimly lit attic filled with old boxes and cobwebs. Luca, a young man, is standing in the attic, holding a dusty box filled with old letters and photographs. The environment is filled with the sense of discovery, as Luca's eyes widen in surprise and curiosity while he examines the contents of the box.

Introduction to the writing exercise and its purpose:

This exercise is designed to practice the “Show, Don't Tell” technique, describing an unexpected discovery without making the character's emotional reactions explicit. The goal is to bring out surprise, curiosity and confusion through details and actions.


Luke enters the attic of his grandmother's house for the first time and finds an old box full of mysterious letters and photographs.


Recount the moments when Luke explores the attic and discovers the box, focusing on the details of the environment and his actions. Show his surprise and curiosity through his physical reactions and movements.

Suggestions and exercise development:

Describe the dusty, semi-lit environment of the attic, with creaking beams and cobwebs at the corners. Illustrate how Luke hesitantly approaches the box, dusting it off with a trembling hand. Show his gaze fixating on the old photographs, the way he delicately touches them, his breath deepening. Conclude with Luke sitting on the floor, surrounded by the letters, as sunset light filters through the windows, suggesting his total immersion in discovery.


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