Why Your Character’s Clothes Don’t Matter

BEEP BEEP BEEP
I moaned and turned off my alarm. Another day of high school. I threw off my covers, yawned, then walked to the bathroom, brushed my teeth, and took a shower.

Once I got back to my room, I threw on a baby blue crop top, a pair of dark grey skinny jeans with cut outs in the knees, and some matching black Converse, then put on some blue eyeshadow from Sephora and light pink lipstick, quickly grabbing my cerulean blue Gucci tote bag.

Ladies and gentlemen, I have just given you a (shortened) cliche beginning of many Wattpad stories out there. The topic of my helpful rant today is…you guessed it: Clothing!

I’ll admit that when I wrote my first book at 16, I was a victim to the clothing info dump similar to that above. Many Wattpad writers are girls. I must admit, we like our clothes.

Since we love clothes so much, we want to give our characters an entire wardrobe and style, down to the color of their eyeshadow. The thing that we realize too late is that, well, none of that matters.

Excess details like listing off all the items of clothing your character is putting on before catching the bus is completely taking your reader away from the action, which is something you never want to do. If a reader could be disinterested, then so will a future publisher.

Another fact about clothing is that it’s just not important. Unless, well, it is important. For example, clothing for a regular day of school isn’t important. Describing your main characters prom or wedding dress is. An outfit to a concert isn’t important. An outfit to a concert her band is performing at for the first time is. Mainly, describing a characters normal attire in great detail shouldn’t be a priority.

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