Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Tuesday - Writing Tip..."Can't Put it Down Book"

When I first started writing, I formulated each chapter as a "day in the life of" scene. Guess what? I learned quickly how boring that can be. If you end your chapter at the "end" of the scene...day...whatever, how does that entice your reader to keep reading? It is too easy to stick in a bookmark and shut the book. Sometimes days will go by before they pick it up again.

So, how do you get reviews that say "I couldn't put the book down"? Easy. Stop the chapter in the middle of something or leave it with an unanswered question. Come on, you know you've read books like this.

For instance, I just finished reading Karen Harper's BELOW THE SURFACE. The last paragraph of Chapter One: "Bloodred colors exploded before her eyes, in her head. Something huge lunged at her. Then came only blackness."

Could you just close the book on that? I couldn't. Chapter Two ends: "But these sharks almost bumping the boat were no work of art--this race was life and death for real." You bet...I kept on reading...

I've had reviews for my books that said "real page turner", "couldn't put it down", "had to read it all the way through". Those are the kinds of reviews you want to receive. It's the kind of reviews that make your readers anxious to read your next book.

It's like a movie shown in serials. Each one leaves you hungry for the next. So, if you want to create a "can't put it down book", end each chapter with a cliff hanger!

Thanks for stopping by.


Chris said...

Good advice! Always leave them wanting more.

Carol Ann said...

Thanks for stopping by, Chris!