I found the key to success, only to discover that the door was never locked.

November 22, 2013

What makes a book un-put-down-able?

 

As a writer this question is a repeating conflict on the mind. We spend hours pouring out our hearts onto the page and biting our nails at the idea that this story might just be the one. The thing about writing is that while there are many rules to the art, there is no perfect recipe on how to do it well.

 

That’s right I said recipe. In the spirit of the season I’m just going say it. Writing is like making a thanksgiving dinner. You can’t just put a plot next to some cliff-hangers and dialogue and expect magic to happen instantaneously. In the same way that you can’t just set out a turkey with some stuffing and a side of cranberries expecting no one to get food poisoning. You think I’m joking? No, this matter is very serious. Writing a story that keeps your reader involved is a challenge. I struggle with it when I post chapters week to week and watch the dip or soaring amount of numbers as readers come and go.

 

Ella Medler, a U.K. author and free-lance editor, said that there’s no denying the fact that not all books have that key ingredient, the hallucinogenic that makes us continue to ignore the world while we turn the pages until the dinner’s charcoal, the cat has ventured to take its chances on the open prairie and the neighbors have unofficially- and somewhat illegally - adopted the baby. That stuff is magic.  

 

As a writer you have to know what the key ingredient is to your own work. You have stumble past the initial idea, through the conflict, characters and the emotional rollercoaster of how all those pieces interlock. You have to believe in what you’re doing and give your reader a reason to keep reading. Make them think that this world you created is so real that they’re willing to pack up their entire life and move right into your world.

 

I wouldn’t say that my writing is at the level of Jennifer Cruise, or Kristen Higgins, but i think I'm heading in the right direction. I making my mark, however little ... at least people know I'm here.

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