How to Write a Poker Scene


Poker is a card game where players place bets to try and win the pot. The player with the highest ranked hand wins the pot. There are several different types of hands. The best hand is a royal flush, which includes the ace, king, queen and jack of the same suit. Other good hands include four of a kind, straight and two pair.

When writing scenes where poker is played, try to focus on the emotions of the characters. The more believable the character’s reactions, the more dramatic and interesting your scene will be. The key is to keep the action moving and avoid pacing issues. Describing a series of cards, bets and reveals can make the scene feel lame or gimmicky. Instead, show us what other people are doing and how their faces look as the action unfolds.

During a hand, players may place bets on their own hand or on the cards revealed on the table. Each player must bet the same amount as the last person to his or her right. If a player wants to bet more than the previous person, he or she must say “raise” to add additional money to the betting pool.

At the end of a hand, the dealer reveals all of the players’ cards and collects the bets into a central pot. A player may win the main pot or one of the side pots. The winner of the main pot must have the highest ranked hand.