How to Write About Poker


Poker is a card game that is played by two or more people. The game is known for its bluffing and misdirection. It is believed to have evolved from the seventeenth-century French game of poque and the German game of primero.

The game is played with a standard 52-card deck of English playing cards and is most commonly played with one or more jokers (wild cards). It can be played by two to seven players. During each betting interval in the game, one player, depending on the variant of poker being played, has the privilege or obligation to make the first bet by placing chips (representing money) into the pot equal to or greater than the amount placed in by the players before him/her.

Players must then decide whether to call the bet and play their hand or raise it. A raised bet is a sign of strength; it can cause the player with a weaker hand to fold and allows players with good hands to call other bets and increase their winnings.

A strong poker writer has excellent knowledge of the rules and variations of the game, including how to read the other players’ actions. This includes their eye movements, idiosyncrasies and betting behavior. The best writers use this information to write scenes that are compelling and believable. They also know that describing the action without being in the players’ heads can make a scene feel lame or gimmicky.