Archive for the ‘Plot’ Category

re: The Dreaded Flashback

posted 7/12/16

Dear Editor…

In my outline, my main character finds out my supporting character has been manipulating her from the beginning and wants answers. Initially, I was going to write a flashback chapter to explain how that came about, but I’ve read readers and writers hate flashbacks. The flashback was going to be his explanation. How else could I achieve this?

Sincerely,
J

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Re: How to Not Annoy Readers?

posted 1/6/16

Dear Editor…

I have a story idea: Two strangers’ lives tragically collide in a hit & run accident, leaving the DRIVER with haunting visions of the VICTIM. Driver’s visions of Victim become more desperate and her guilt more debilitating, so she decides to return to save Victim—and herself. My question: What do you think of this non-traditional structure: Book 1: Victim’s POV pre-crash; Book 2: Driver’s POV post crash; Book 3: Victim’s POV & resolution of Driver’s story. I worry about leaving Victim’s story in limbo for all of BOOK 2. Readers won’t know if the protagonist they just spent 100 pages with is dead or alive. Is that enthralling, or just plain irritating? I know I could do alternating POV chapters, but I don’t care for that style. Ideas?

Thanks!
Plotting Author

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re: Writing a Romantic Scene for a Novel That’s Not Romance

posted 8/19/15

Dear Editor…

I need your help! I’m writing a book, and I don’t know how to incorporate a romance scene without making the whole book a romance. It’s a YA Novel, and I don’t want to ruin the book.

Sincerely,
H.

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re: Why Does My Action “Read Slow”?

posted 3/9/15

Dear Editor…

The feedback on my mystery manuscript was that it has lots of action but “reads slow.” The reader gave one bit of elaboration: “Some of the paragraphs ‘feel’ long even though they aren’t.” I’m not sure what to do with that. Suggestions?

Sincerely,
Confused

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re: How Come If I Stay’s Opening Works?

posted 9/22/14

Dear Readers…

Last week a writer—Diane—asked me why some current bestsellers that start with backstory or as the day is dawning can make those slower beginnings work so well? She specifically asked about The Fault in Our Stars and If I Stay. I posted my answer about The Fault in Our Stars last week. I think this is such a useful exploration of story beginnings that I’m taking up that same question today, this time parsing out If I Stay‘s opening.

The Editor

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WRITING NEW ADULT FICTION Launch Week, Day 2: Manipulating New Adult Characters

posted 8/26/14

Dear Readers…

It’s Day 2 of Writing New Adult Fiction Launch Week! Today, a “Free Chapter Critique” giveaway and tips for manipulating new adults with their own universal traits.

Thanks for joining me!
The Editor

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re: How to Balance High Action with Deep Characterization

posted 5/29/14

Dear Editor…

I’m writing a teen thriller, filled with lots of action. Beta readers say I’ve got the action but that the characters aren’t interacting enough. I don’t really know what they mean, since the protagonist and her protector are in every scene together. They talk all the time! Ideas? Can you recommend some books that do it right?

Thanks,
T. E. S.

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re: Timing the Time Travel in Your Novel

posted 4/23/14

Dear Editor…

If I am writing a novel about time travel, do the time travellers have to enter the alternate time zone or the new world very early in the novel?

Thanks,
Joy

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re: Resources for Richer Characters, Plots, Voice, Dialogue

posted 7/10/13

Dear Readers…

Two things floated to the top of the Internet this week that you might find useful for beefing up characters, plot, voice, and dialogue, so The Editor is featuring them today: “Deborah Halverson on Why Perfectly Nice People Make Perfect Bad Guys” and The Editor’s FREE webinar “Four Fixes for a ‘Flat’ Story”. Read on for descriptions and links…

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re: Multiple Character Quests

posted 2/20/12

Dear Editor…

I’m new to writing and currently working on a YA book.  I have three main characters in my book that will be going on different quests.  How should I handle each quest in one book or should they each have a book of there own – meeting up at the end?  Thanks for you help!

Kathi

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