Sunday, December 7, 2014

Sunday's Links to Writing & Marketing Blog Posts

By: Chris Winkle

The beginning of your story can do many things, but one is more important than any other: capturing the reader’s interest. If they don’t keep reading, any other purpose – setting the tone, hinting at central themes, or whatever else – becomes pointless. As a reader who frequently doesn’t get past the first few pages, I’m going to share what inspires me to keep going.

Immediate Action

Readers expect the beginning to be slow. Some will even wait through the first half for action and conflict to arrive.

But surprising them with action and conflict in your opening scene is the single most effective way to keep them reading. They aren’t going to put the story down while they are being entertained. They won’t even notice how many pages they’ve flipped through.

Sometimes it’s difficult to start the conflict of your story without setting the stage. The Lord of the Rings is more powerful because the audience witnesses the peace and innocence of the Shire, before being introduced to the dangers of the world. But in that case, the story can still open with a smaller conflict that introduces the themes of the larger one that follows.

What I don’t recommend is the common practice of highlighting the villain in the opening instead of the protagonist, through the eyes of a redshirt. This is done to allow action and set tension, while keeping the main character in a state of blissful ignorance about the big problem at hand. It does that effectively, but it keeps writers from using the next tool in this kit.

Meeting the Protagonist

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Read the full article HERE!


If you missed my writing & marketing tweets and retweets yesterday, here they are again:
  1. Mythcreants » The Keys to a Great Opening Scene
  2. The Path to Deepening Your Protagonist - Writingeekery
  3. 7 Ways Writers Can Use Facebook Rooms by Frances Caballo — The Book Designer
  4. Nine Ways to Cut a Story That's Too Long - Venture Galleries
  5. 100 Character Development Questions for Writers - :
  6. What Makes a Good Story? Slush Pile Lessons #PubTip - JeriWB Gaiman Shares 4 Tips For Reading Stories to Kids - GalleyCat "...let the children chew the edges.”
  7. Gifts for Writers and Authors - Novel Experience
  8. 7 Best-In-Class Content Marketing Characteristics To Succeed - Heidi Cohen
  9. Cover Design Checklist | chrismcmullen
  10. Karen Woodward: Story Openings: Five Choices
  11. Mythcreants » Six Plot Excuses No One Wants to Hear
  12. The Art of Social Media for Writers
  13. Cover Design Checklist | chrismcmullen
  14. Publishing ... and Other Forms of Insanity: 15 Reading and Writing Communities That Can Boost Your Platform
  15. Best TED Talks for (New) Bloggers to Get Motivated
  16. What Authors Should Know About Amazon Book Categories - Marketing Tips For Authors
  17. The 9 Must-Haves for a High-Performing Book Launch Page | Your Writer Platform
  18. Free vs. Discounted: How BookBub’s Selection Rates Vary - BookBub Unbound
Happy writing and running, Kathy

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