Today I am going to write something interesting. I am going to start with a short snappy opening. You will want to know more.
I am going to draw you in with a teasing…
Then I am going to write longer sentences with some clever, interesting narrative that creates texture on the page. I am going to create a sense of place so real you are standing there, in it but I am going to be sparse and not over descriptive. I am going to make you feel everything the character is feeling so vividly your own heart rate is going to slowly elevate. I am not going to ‘tell’ you how a character feels though. I am going to ‘show’ you by invading their direct thoughts and by using body language and subtext. I am going to make you see it as if a camera is watching, and the reader is active in the process of interpreting what they see. I am going to show you only enough back story for the front story to work and leave some aspects for you to ponder.
From the outset and that punchy opening line you will get a sense of conflict and you will know what the character wants — what problem is to be solved, dilemma resolved, question answered. That will drive the action and bubble at the heart of everything.
The story will be all the barriers that stop or try to stop our protagonist getting what they want. I will make you care enough about all the characters but in particular our protagonist. You will worry about them when you leave them, so you won’t go to bed with them in peril, you will have to keep reading. This is the page-turnability I give you.
You will sweat, worry, be wrong-footed on a journey of twists and turns and then you will sense the climactic scene, with dread and hope and no cliched heart racing or adrenaline coursing.
You will hang onto the cliff face with the character and you will sign with massive relief when the conflict is resolved. Or is it completely?
You will return to your resting state with the home-coming and if you’re really insightful you will ponder, question and wonder. While the question has been answered you will still have room for thinking and digesting. You might now be full and it’s the best sandwich you ever ate, but you know you will be eating that again and again in your head, for that is the power of good writing and a good story.
You will come back for more. You will be changed. You will re-read that great last line and wish you’d thought of it.
Today I am going to write a story. What about you?