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Telling Your Story, Part 1 

Showing, rather than Telling

· Writing Tips

Over the next few weeks, we will be breaking down the writing portion of ParentFinder Adoption Profiles so that you can get a better idea of what it means to share your story. Each Telling Your Story post will focus on one tip or profile section to help you hone in on certain elements that will help elevate your adoption profile.

Let’s begin! This post will focus in on one of the most important concepts of adoption profile writing: Showing, rather than telling.

What we mean by “showing, rather than telling,” is that we want you to avoid using too many adjectives when describing people, places or events in your life. Instead, you should challenge yourself to describe the scene, character or setting in the narrative. Here’s an example:

Telling: Colin is an adventurous, hard working and intelligent man. He loves to collect books, go for hikes and is always honing his craft as a writer.

Showing: There is never a dull moment when you’re around Colin. One day, you may find yourself hiking up Mount Whitney, while the other you may be hunting for rare books with him at his favorite shop, Printer’s Row. I always love waking up early to make some coffee, only to find out that it’s already been made, and the pot is sitting next to Colin, typing away on his computer, working on his new story.

By showing a reader, rather than telling, you can create a more informative and authentic narrative. Let’s try this again when talking about a woman’s motherly qualities:

Telling: Tara is so amazing with our daughter Sophia. She is a loving, caring and fun mother and it always brings joy into my heart when I see them playing together. She is an incredible mom and so excited to welcome another child into her heart.

Showing: There is no better sound to come home to after work than the sound of laughter in the kitchen! Each night, Tara and our daughter, Sophia, choose a recipe from Cookbook for Kids and have a blast whipping up a dish together for our family meal. When they aren’t collaborating in the kitchen, you’ll probably find them crafting together in the basement or working on their vegetable garden out back. Together, Tara and Sophia make an incredible team – I can’t imagine the awesome things they could do with another set of hands helping out with all the fun.

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