How to Write About Poker

Poker is a card game in which players wager chips (representing money) on the outcome of a hand. It is usually played with a minimum of five players and a maximum of seven. The cards are dealt face down and betting takes place in a clockwise direction until every player either calls the bet or folds his or her cards.

When the game is called for a showdown, each player’s hands are revealed to all other players. The highest ranked hand wins the pot. Ties are broken based on the high card. If two players have the same high pair, then the higher card breaks the tie. If the highest cards are not a pair, then the second highest card breaks the tie. If there is no pair or high card, then the ace breaks the tie.

During each betting interval, the player to the left of the dealer places the same amount in the pot as the last active player. If he or she wants to raise the amount, he or she must say “I open” or the agreed upon minimum raising phrase.

The best way to write about Poker is to focus on the reaction of the players and how their cards play out. Detailed descriptions of card draws, bets and checks will feel lame and gimmicky. Instead, use the card action to advance your plot and character development. This can be done through dialogue, actions and reactions of the characters.