Saturday, March 24, 2012

Learning and Workshops

For more information visit my new site

The one thing I enjoy about writing is, as a writer, you're never done with learning.
No matter how much you already know, there is always more interesting lessons to learn.  I've been doing an interactive workshop through RWNZ with the lovely Susan Meier.

What a steep learning curve and what an excellent tutor.
The course on Can This Manuscript Be Saved is an excellent resource for writers.  The questions asked by writers and Susan's answers are both informative and very constructive.

The one thing that truly stands out in the writing community, is everyone's willingness to help other writers. No question is deemed to basic or irrelevant. And this course is no exception.

Susan is running another course on-line on Conflict and I am going to sign on for that one too.

Susan's  blog is also a great one for writers keen to improve their mastery of the craft. Visit Susan's blog you won't be disappointed.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

emotional bullets

How do you keep a reader?

Keeping your reader interested enough to keep turning the pages of your book is
  •  The key to a satisfying read for your reader.
  • A demonstration of an author's mastery of the craft of writing.
How do you dow these two things?

Emotional tension. Emotional tension. Emotional tension.

So how do you create enough emotional tension to keep your reader hooked?

Have your character ask the hard questions. There's nothing like one of your characters asking the hard questions to up the emotional tension. 

Don't underestimate the value of emotional bullets or using shock value to keep a reader hooked.
What is an emotional bullet?

In one book I read recently.

When the hero returned to the bedroom the heroine was gone, the cover-alls she had worn were spread out on the floor. And it wasn't until he went to lift them up he realised the arms, legs and collars were nailed to the floor with three inch nails.

The reader reaction. Wow! What reader wouldn't want to read on? Who wouldn't want to find out the reason someone would do something so bizzare?

Or take this line from my book   "Return to Totara Park"

"Tonight, Jared you are responsible for Winsome's and Lacey's safety under this roof. It would never do to have another accidental death at Totara Park."

Why would someone make that outlandish statement?
These emotional bullets not only up the emotional tension, they have great shock value.

Readers just have to read on desperate to find out what happens next. When was the last time you shocked your readers with an emotional bullet?
Try it, you might be surprised.